FOREWORD

The author of this book Mr. Sheshrao Chavan had met me only once. He had come to see me with my old friend Mr. Prakash Almeida. That was a long meeting in which we discussed many issues including politics. In the very next visit Mr. Chavan handed over a typed manuscript of his book, “Mohammad Ali Jinnah: The Great Enigma” and requested me to write a Foreword to the book. I am not a politician, nor am I a historian. Of course I have had always keen interest in politics and so I had followed the events that culminated in the partition of India rather intimately. Perhaps through our discussion Mr. Chavan got the impression that being a vintage man of 90, which I am, and who spent the first 20 years of his life in Sind, which I did, I might be the just right person to write Foreword to his book, which I do not think I am! Nevertheless I agreed to Mr. Chavan’s request mainly because the subject is very dear to me. My Recllections of Jinnah: I had the opportunity to see Mr. Jinnah twice during the early years of my career as ENT Surgeon, a couple of years before independence. The first time I saw him was when I was in London for my FRCS examination. A public meeting was held at the famous Prince Albert Hall to be addressed by Jinnah and Liaqat Ali. I attended that meeting out of curiosity. About 1500 Indians mostly Muslims, had gathered. As soon as Mr. Jinnah referred to Pakistan in his speech,

one young man, a student like me, got up and started shouting that there would be no division of India! Expectedly the young man was heckled by the crowd, which was already charged with jingoism. I later learnt that the young man was none other than Dr. Rafiq Zakaria, the great Islamic scholar, who passed away recently. In the heart of my heart, I felt proud of the young man who had displayed exemplary courage to speak up what he believed even at the risk of attracting mob fury. The next time I saw Mr. Jinnah was when I was called to examine him for his minor ENT complaint at ‘Bombay House,’ (Tata House) where he was a regular visitor. Jinnah himself wanted to be examined only by an ENT Specialist, who had FRCS degree from England, and I fitted his requirement aptly. Mr. Jinnah was very polite to me during the meeting where besides us, Dr. Jal Patel, Tata’s In-house doctor was also present. I was proud to have examined such a highly distinguished person like Jinnah, who had by then already reached the status of a cult figure. Thereafter there was no occasion for me to see Mr. Jinnah. However, I followed almost all major events concerning Jinnah and Pakistan. Needless to say, mere name of the book was enough to goad me to read the entire manuscript not once, but thrice! The purpose of writing this book is to explore, once again, answer to questions that have haunted our mind for years like: Who divided India? Was Jinnah alone responsible for Partition? Whether the Congress party and its leaders like Gandhiji and Jawaharlal Nehru too were responsible in some

2

measure? Finally as the name of the book suggests, it is an attempt by the author to unravel the enigma called Jinnah. Mr. Sheshrao Chavan, without any emotional attachment and without any prejudice and completely unbiased brought out the facts after going through several books relating to the subject, archival material and authentic references. He has narrated the facts and left it to the reader to form his own opinion. When any such books are written, mostly a person is already known about his views and he tries to justify the facts in his favour or against them. I think, Chavan is an exceptional person. This is the best part of his character and qualities. He has followed Rajtarangini of Kalhana. This book should serve as a beacon to students and research scholars on how a subject as intense and intricate as Jinnah’s life should be treated, researched and presented. Having read about the political life of Jinnah by various authors including Dr. Rafiq Zakaria, I have formed certain impressions about Jinnah in my memory based on my own assessment and those of others. Die-hard Nationalist: There is no doubt that Jinnah who returned from England in 1896 to practice law in Bombay was a perfect nationalist and an ardent votary of HinduMuslim unity and rightly thought that religion was a personal matter of an individual. He first attended the 20th Session of the Congress held in Bombay in the year 1904. The first person who captivated his mind then was Gopal Krishna Gokhale, a Brahmin and

3

Founder of the Servants of India Society. Gokhale was one of the most prominent leaders during 19th century, and was mentor to both Gandhi and Jinnah. So impressed was Jinnah with Gokhale’s personality that he actually wanted to become a “Muslim Gokhale.” Gokhale had described Jinnah as the best “Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity.” Till Gokhale’s demise in 1915, Jinnah and Gokhale remained greatest admirers of each other. Sarojini Naidu was another great admirer of Jinnah. In her biography of Jinnah, she has showered high praise on Jinnah for his intense patriotism Jinnah’s Defence of Lokmanya Tilak: One of the tallest nationalists of the independence struggle, Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak had chosen Jinnah to defend him in the Court of Law, when he was charged with seditious writing in his newspaper ‘Kesari.’ Tilak lost the case and was sentenced to six years of imprisonment. Every body felt that the punishment awarded to Tilak by an Indian Judge, Justice Davar was rather harsh. An appeal was filed and Jinnah again appeared for Tilak. This time Tilak was exonerated by the Court. Tilak was an orthodox Brahmin and a great patriot. Engaging the services of Jinnah by Tilak itself was a tribute to Jinnah’s legal acumen and patriotism, especially since there were several legal luminaries practicing in the Bombay High Court then. After Justice Davar sentenced Tilak to six years of rigorous imprisonment, the British Government conferred Knighthood on Davar. The Bar Association of Bombay High Court wanted to give him dinner.

4

When the circular informing the event went to Jinnah, he wrote a very strong remark that the Bar should feel ashamed to want to give a dinner to a judge who had obtained knighthood by doing what the Government wanted, and by sending a great patriot to jail with a savage sentence. When Justice Davar called Jinnah to his chamber to know the reason for the latter writing such strong words against the Judge, Jinnah told him that what he had written was truth and that he could not suppress the strong feeling about the manner in which the Judge had handled Tilak’s case. This shows the very high regard Jinnah had for Tilak. Jinnah Hall: Jinnah was such a staunch nationalist that people of Bombay collected 65,000 rupees by way of contributions and built the ‘Jinnah Hall,’ at Lamington Road in Girgaum area of Bombay to commemorate their triumph under Jinnah, who led a popular movement to oppose the public reception that was to be accorded to Lord Wellington when his tenure as Governor of Bombay came to an end in 1918. A majority of those who contributed to the fund were Hindus. Why Jinnah distanced himself from the Congress: Many incidents were responsible for creating a hiatus between Jinnah and the Congress. But three of them could be termed as ‘turning points’ that changed his attitude towards the Congress. 1.The Khilafat Movement: The word Khilafat draws its origin from ‘Caliph.’ Before discussing the Khilafat movement and its objectives, we need to understand the origin of the

5

word itself. Caliph is the term or title for the Islamic leader of the Ummah, or community of Islam. It is an Anglicised version of the Arabic word Khalifah, which means “successor” or “representative.” Caliphs were often so referred to as leaders of the Muslims. After the first four Sunni Caliphs, the title was claimed by the Umayyads, the Abbasids, and the Ottomans, as well as by others, competing lineages in Spain, North Africa, and Egypt. The Turkish Ottoman Caliphate (Empire) had existed for over six centuries. At the height of its power in the 16th and 17th centuries, its territory included the Middle East, parts of North Africa, and much of South-Eastern Europe. During these two centuries, the Ottoman Empire was among the world’s most powerful political entities. It was the only nonEuropean power to seriously challenge the rising power of the West between the 15th and 20th centuries, to such an extent that it became an integral part of European balance of power politics. The defeat of Turkey in the First World War caused apprehensions in India over the Khalifa’s custodianship of the Holy places of Islam. The Khilafat Movement was launched in India by Ali brothers – Muhammad Ali and Shaukat Ali, - Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Dr. M.A. Ansari, and Hasrat Mohani in 1919 as a movement to protect the Turkish Khalifa and powers. Gandhiji supported the Khilafat Movement and became a member of the Central Khilafat Committee. save his (Ottoman) Caliphate from dismemberment by Great Britain and other European

6

The position taken by Gandhiji in support of his own stand was: “If I deem the Mahomedan to be my brother, it is my duty to help him in his hour of peril to the best of my ability, if his cause commends itself to me as just.” A resolution passed by the Congress at its special session held in Calcutta read thus: “…It is the duty of to every remove non-Muslim religious Indian in that every has legitimate manner to assist his Muslim brother in his attempt calamity overtaken him.” The resolution was opposed by Chittaranjan Das, B.C. Pal, Annie Besant, Rabindranath Tagore and Jinnah. Jinnah said: “I strongly oppose Indian Muslims engaging themselves in extra territorial affairs relating to Muslims outside India.” I myself cannot understand the justification for the Khilafat Movement. The Khilafat Movement was a failure as the Ottoman Caliphate was abolished by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, one of the greatest charismatic leaders of modern Turkey in 1924. The title of Caliph has since become defunct. Although Mahatma Gandhi had on record stated that he would gladly ask for postponement of Swaraj activity if thereby we could advance the interests of Khilafat, the Muslims were not prepared to wait for Swaraj. In desperation they did exactly what Hindus feared. Maulana Mohamad Ali wrote to the ruler of Afganistan Amir Amanullah and requested him to invade India. He requested to …”invade Hindustan, to destroy the power of Marhatahs, and to free the down-and-out-Muslims from the clutches of non-Muslims.” This would have been a disaster for

7

India. Luckily, the British were very strong and the Amir of Afganistan did not venture to attack India. Maulana Mohamad’s words were nothing short of treason. Surprisingly, Gandhiji supported Ali brothers saying that “…They have done nothing, which I would not do. If they had sent a message to Amir, I would also send one to inform Amir that if he came, no Indian so long as I can help it, would help the Government to drive him back.” Chagla in his book, “Roses in December,” has stated that he felt that Gandhiji was wrong in trying to bring about Hindu-Muslim unity by supporting the cause of Khilafat. Such unity, he felt, was based on ‘shifting sands.’ Annie Besant felt thus: “Since the Khilafat agitation, things have changed and it has been one of the many injuries inflicted on India by the encouragement of the Khilafat crusade, that the inner Muslim feeling of hatred against unbelievers has sprung up, naked and unashamed, as in the years gone by.” Here one finds Jinnah reasonable and logical in his public stand on the issue of Khilafat. He spoke as a true patriot and not one guided by religious sentiments. As things turned out, Gandhiji did succeed in attracting Muslims closer to the Congress by supporting the Khilafat Movement, but it was a temporary gain. Before long Muslims deserted the Congress. 2. Motilal Nehru Report:

8

The Indian Statutory Commission was a group of seven British Members of Parliament that had been sent to India in 1927 to study constitutional reforms. It was commonly referred to as the Simon Commission after its Chairman, Sir John Simon. The Commission had to face popular resistance, as there was no representative from India on it. Motilal Nehru chaired the famous Nehru Commission in 1928, that was a counter to the Simon Commission. Nehru Report, the first constitution written by Indians only, conceived a Dominion Status for India within the Empire. It was endorsed by the Congress party, but rejected by more radical Indians who sought complete independence, and by many Muslims who did not feel their interests, concerns and rights were properly represented. On Justice accepted Chagla’s instance, joint electorates were as one of the basic principles of Nehru

Report. Later, on behalf of the Muslim League he endorsed the Report. When Jinnah came to know this, he became furious. Jinnah had suggested four amendments to the report including one seeking onethird representation for Muslims in the Central Legislature, but these were rejected. According to Karachi Mayor Jamshedji Nusserwanji, “the first time I saw Jinnah weep was after his amendments had been rejected at the Calcutta meeting to consider Nehru Report…He had tears in his eyes as he said, Jamshed, this is the parting of the ways.” This was another significant instance of Jinnah’s alienation from the Congress. It may be mentioned here that initially Jinnah was not particularly enamoured of separate

9

electorates and separate representation, but constant persuasion by Muslims made him change his stance. 3. Election of 1937: When preparations started for the election of 1936-1937 under the Government of India Act 1935, Jinnah was still thinking in terms of co-operation between the Muslim League and the Congress. But the results of elections proved to be a turning point in the relations between the two organizations. Congress came to power in nine out of eleven provinces. Muslim League failed to form Government in any province. Jinnah proposed Congress to accept his nominee as Muslim ministers in the two provinces of U.P. and Bombay, but Congress rejected the offer. The States where Congress got majority included the North West Frontier Province where 95% of the population was Muslim. Congress thought that it was the sole party, which had absolute control over the country and that it could afford to ignore the Muslim League. Even in U.P. where the number of Muslims was large, Congress refused to take any Muslim nominee suggested by Jinnah. This neglect by the Congress forced him to reconsider his options. Although it was not binding for the Congress to make members of other party as its Cabinet ministers, Jinnah took the Congress position as a serious affront and started a mass movement to strengthen the base of his party. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru thought that the League had no following. During a bye-election in U.P. in 1937, Jinnah asked votes in the name of Allah and the Holy Koran something unknown till then. Nehru was shocked by Jinnah’s new avataar. He soon

10

realized that it was a mistake not to take Muslim League in the cabinet. But then had Nehru consented to taking Muslim League members in the Congress Governments in U.P. and Bombay, Jinnah would have practically controlled the Government and exploited the situation and created obstacles for the Government the same way as he did at the time of formation of Interim Government in 1946-47. Dangerous Proposition: It is the irony of fate that Jinnah, a die-hard champion of Hindu-Muslim unity, had changed completely in 1938 and charged the Congress with dividing Muslims. Jinnah had turned against his own past. Speaking on the Lahore Resolution of 1940, Jinnah said: “It is extremely difficult to appreciate why our Hindu friends fail to understand the real nature of Islam and Hinduism. They are not religions in the strict sense of the word, but are in fact, different and distinct social orders and it is a dream that the Hindus and Muslims can ever evolve a common nationality, and this misconception of one Indian nation has gone far beyond the limits and is the cause of most of our troubles and will lead India to destruction if we fail to revise our notions in time. The Hindus and Muslims belong to two different religious philosophies, social customs and literature. They neither inter-marry nor inter-dine together and, indeed, they belong to two different civilizations, which are based mainly on conflicting ideas and conceptions. Their aspects on life and of life are different. It is quite clear that Hindus and Musalmans derive their inspiration from different sources of history. They

11

have different epics, different heroes and different episodes. Very often, the hero of one is a foe of the other, and likewise their victories and defeats overlap. To yoke together two such nations under a single State, one as numerical minority and the other as a majority, must lead to growing discontent and the final destruction of any fabric that may be so built up for the Government of such a State.” Subsequently Jinnah said: “Muslim India will not be satisfied unless the right of national selfdetermination is unequivocally recognized….In order to giving real effect to the principle of Pakistan and Muslim self-determination, His Majesty’s Government and Sir Stafford Cripps, will not hesitate to make necessary adjustments on their behalf.” Rajagopalachary’s Support for Pakistan’s Demand: Surprisingly, Madras Chief Minister who went on to become the first Indian Governor General of India Mr. C.Rajagopalachariar addressed a small gathering of Congress supporters in the Madras Legislature, and carried two resolutions for submission to the All India Congress Committee. First, recommending acceptance of Pakistan in principle as a basis for settlement between the Congress and the Muslim League. The second resolution requested permission of the All India Congress Committee for the Madras Congress to unite with the Muslim League and other provincial parties to restore popular Government as a coalition ministry in Madras. The All India Congress Committee at its meeting held on 29th April at Allahabad rejected Rajagopalachary’s resolutions and strongly opposed efforts to disintegrate India.

12

Our Independence and their Independence: Congress’s sustained fight for independence under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi and American pressure compelled the British to grant independence to India. As political awareness grew among Indians, the British encountered serious like resistance to their continuation in India. Most of the leaders who led the independence struggle Dadabhai Naoroji, Gopal Krishna Gokhale, Lomanya Tilak, Jinnah, Mahatma Gandhi, and Jawaharlal Nehru were exposed to western education and they created awakening among the people about independence. The British had no desire to give independence to India. The Minto-Morley Reforms (1909), the Montague-Chelmsford Reforms (1919), The Simon Commission (1927), the Round Table Conference (1930-33), the Government of India Act 1935, were all attempts to keep Indians engaged and desist from demanding total Independence. One of the less cited reasons why the British gave independence to India was that financially it had become difficult for them to carry on with colonies. It was our good fortune that the Labour Party came in power with Richard Clement Attlee as the Prime Minister of England. Attlee had already declared in a speech made in the British Parliament, to which I was a witness, that if voted to power the Labour Government would grant Independence to India and nationalize health. It was ecstasy for me when I heard these words that India would be free. There was a loud applause from the Labour members and jeers from the

13

Conservatives and derogatory statements by Churchill against India. Churchill said very clearly that India is still a savage country and these ethnic people would fight and disintegrate if England left. …There were already rumblings in India that partition would cause hardships and there would be civil war.” If instead of Labour Government, the Conservatives had come to power, Churchill as the Prime Minister would never have granted independence to India. This is proof of the fact that on several occasions in the Parliament, Churchill had spoken that India was a jewel in the crown of the King and it will be kept under subjugation at any cost. He once said: “I have not become His Majesty’s Prime Minister to liquidate the empire.” Jinnah- the Diplomat: Creation of Pakistan is a tribute to Jinnah’s diplomatic skills and political acumen. While for India, non-violence movement spear-headed by Gandhiji won the freedom, Jinnah’s power of persuasion and diplomatic moves to convince the Muslims and the British about his two-nation theory won him a nationState in the form of Pakistan, that too without his or his followers going to jail or suffering hardships. Conclusion: In conclusion, I would say, the seeds of Jinnah’s alienation from the Congress were sowed much before. Gandhiji came into prominence only in 1916-almost 12 years after Jinnah began his associations with the Congress. Jinnah was thus senior to both Gandhi and Nehru and yet he did not get what he thought to be his rightful place in the

14

Congress.

When

Gandhiji

made

it

clear

that

Jawaharlal Nehru would be his heir, Jinnah realized that he had no chance in India. It dawned on him that Muslims who had enjoyed political power as rulers of India for almost one thousand years until the British arrived were not going to wield any political clout. In the new political set up, Jinnah surmised that Muslims would remain in minority and suffer. The best chance for his political revival as also that of his party was to take up the Muslim cause by insisting on representation of minorities. I had known the late justice M.C. Chagla intimately. Justice Chagla was the Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court. Whenever I met Justice Chagla, we often discussed politics. Once I asked Justice Chagla his opinion about Jinnah. He said: “Jinnah was without doubt a brilliant lawyer, but he was also egoistic.” Justice Chagla described Jinnah as a great patriot who left the Congress because Gandhiji did not give him due importance within the Congress party. Was Creation of Pakistan Good or Bad: Was creation of Pakistan good or bad for India? My opinion is: it was good for both. In 1946-47, the Interim Government formed at the Centre, of Congress and League representatives, was a ghastly failure. League members had literally held Government to ransom on even small and insignificant issues. Liaqat Ali brought the Government to its knees. At this point, the League was in a commanding position to dictate terms to the Congress. At that time, had League asked for separate electorates for Muslims, the Congress would have in all probability given in to its demand,

15

which would have been a disaster for the country. But then had Pakistan not been created, the country would have witnessed chaotic conditions. Dr. Rafiq Zakaria had a different opinion. He said had partition not occurred, Muslims would have ruled democratically in at least seven States in India including Sind, North West Frontier Province, Baluchistan, Punjab , U.P. and Assam. Jinnah Returns to Secularism: Thankfully, Jinnah became the votary of secularism once again as evidenced by the speech he made on August 11, 1947 in the Pakistan Constituent Assembly in front of Lord Mountbatten. In that speech, Jinnah had said that in a future Pakistan, everyone would be treated equally irrespective of their religion, and non-Muslims would be free to practice their respective religions. Again, in his inaugural address as first Governor General of Pakistan, Jinnah said: “You will find that in the course of time, Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense because that is the personal faith of each individual, but in the political sense as citizens of the State.” Alas! Jinnah did not live to see the development of his fledging country. He died just thirteen months after the birth of Pakistan. His vision of Secular State was not realized during his life time. Jinnah Proved Wrong: Jinnah’s claim that Hindus and Muslims can never live together has been proved wrong. Hindus and Muslims have lived together peacefully for 57

16

years

in

India,

small

incidents

of

discords

notwithstanding. But then small incidents occur elsewhere too, including in Pakistan. Nevertheless, I am happy to see Pakistan making steady progress as a civilized developing nation. In 1982, I visited Pakistan. I met Hindus and Muslims both and tried to obtain their opinion of Pakistan. I found people happier than I had expected. Partition is thus a history. Let us accept it without grudge. The focus should now be on India and Pakistan becoming good neighbours. Did Jinnah Repent Over Pakistan: Mr. Chavan’s conclusion that Jinnah repented after creating Pakistan is difficult to prove and I do not agree with him. The conclusion is based on Jinnah’s reported comments made in private conversation with a couple of persons. There was no reason for Jinnah to be apologetic for something he had achieved singlehandedly. Moreover what has been ascribed to him as having said cannot be verified. In fact, I believe Jinnah must be the happiest person in the world for creating a nation-State for Muslims. Had Muslims not have a leader like Jinnah, Pakistan would never have been created. It is quite possible that had his views were honoured by Gandhiji and other leaders of the Congress, Jinnah might not have gone to the extent of seeking separation from India. But to conclude that Gandhiji, Nehru and Patel were equally responsible to create Pakistan appears farfetched. They accepted the creation of Pakistan finding that India as one country would be a failure.

17

Partition, A Boon for Sindhis: Being a Sindhi, I think it was good that Partition there occurred. no After the partition, Sindhis that migrated to India although unlike Bengal and Punjab were compelling circumstances necessitated their migration. In Sind, there were no industries and even today Sind does not have many industries. Had Sind Hindus stayed back, they would have remained in an undemocratic country without any powers. They would have certainly not become prosperous the way they did had they stayed in Sind. It is true that Sindhis had to suffer extreme conditions for the first ten years after coming to India, but that perhaps hardened their enterprising spirit and they established themselves in different parts of India as a highly successful enterprising people. Today Sindhis are extremely happy in India and making valuable contribution business. To a discerning reader, the book serves as a window not just to the life of Jinnah, but also importantly to the most significant epoch in the preIndependence changed the history whole of India (1904-1947) of the that complexion Indian to almost every field of human endeavour, especially, health, education, trade and

subcontinent. The book is a brave attempt to put the personality of Barrister Jinnah in proper perspective based on historical evidence so diligently gathered by Mr. Sheshrao Chavan. In fact, by reading this book, readers can by and large acquaint themselves with the story of India’s Independence Struggle from the

18

British. The book spurs the reader to know more about the history of the tumultuous period leading to the partition of India. I think, therein lies the success of Mr. Chavan’s book.

Dr. L. H. Hiranandani

19

PREFACE
Ever since India became a free nation,

simultaneously with the partition of the country, while every one is eager to take credit for the freedom of the country, no one is prepared to take responsibility or blame for the partition of the country between India and Pakistan. It is also the source and cause of four wars between the two countries, continuous terrorist activities, huge defense expenditure incurred by both countries with resultant poverty of the masses on both sides. The decision to partition the country was most uncalled for and most unfortunate in the long and cherished history of India. It resulted in killing of around a million people and uprooting millions more from their homes and lands they had tilled for generations. What is sad and surprising is that the blame is attempted to be placed on the shoulders of the man, who is not at all responsible for partition. Contrary, he tried his best to prevent it. He was forced to accept it as a fait accompli by his own ardent followers, particularly Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Vallabhbahi Patel. A lot of literature is available, historical records are there and a number of books have been written on the subject as also on the creator of PakistanMohammed Ali Jinnah. Jinnah is considered as the villain of peace, so much even today that a leader of a

20

political party, who spoke a few words favourable to Jinnah was made to step down as a leader of political party, which he built to a large extent. Then who is responsible for partition of India? I would like to list down them in order of their culpability. 1. British Government 2. Mohammed Ali Jinnah 3. Hindu Fundamentalist Organizations like Hindu Maha Sabha and R.S.S. 4. Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Patel Let us first examine the role of Mohammed Ali Jinnah in the freedom struggle of India and subsequently in the creation of Pakistan. Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim Unity: The political
th

career

of

Jinnah

began

with

attending the 20

session of the Indian National

Congress in 1904. He met Gopal Krishna Gokhale at this session and was so captivated by the wisdom, fairness and moderation of Gokhale that he became his ardent admirer and later expressed that his fond ambition is to become the “Muslim Gokhale.” And in turn, Gokhale said: “Jinnah has true stuff in him, and that freedom from all sectarian prejudice will make him the best Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity.” Dadabhai Naoroji in his presidential address at the Calcutta session of the Congress in 1906 made an appeal for national unity to achieve Swaraj. Jinnah echoed this theme at every political meeting, he addressed during the next ten years and emerged as, “Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity.” When Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak was arrested for seditious writings in his news paper,

21

“Kesari,” Jinnah pleaded for his release, but failed. Later in the appeal filed against the conviction, Jinnah succeeded in setting aside the sentence. On a circular issued by Bar for giving dinner to Justice Davar, Jinnah wrote: “The Bar should be ashamed of giving dinner to a judge, who obtained a Knighthood by doing what the Government wanted, and by sending a great patriot (Tilak) to jail with savage sentence.” This speaks for the regards, Jinnah had for Tilak and also his courage of conviction and spirit of nationalism. In his very first speech at the age of thirty five, in the Imperial Legislative Council, held at Calcutta on 25th February 1910, Jinnah lent his support to Mahatma Gandhi’s work in South Africa and made scathing attack on the harsh and cruel treatment meted out to the Indians in South Africa for which he was reprimanded by Lord Minto, who was presiding over the Council meeting. Jinnah shot back at Minto: “My Lord, I should feel much inclined to use much stronger words…I do say that the treatment meted out to Indians is the harshest and the feeling in the country is unanimous.” Jinnah invariably supported national issues like Gokhale’s Elementary Education Bill and Basu’s Special Marriage Bill. However, even before the advent of Gandhiji on our political scene, though proclaiming himself against separate electorates for Muslims he had no problem in formally enrolling himself as a member of the All India Muslim League in1913 on his understanding that his loyalty to Muslim League and Muslim interests would in no way and at no time imply

22

even the shadow of disloyalty to the larger national cause to which his life was dedicated. In 1914, Jinnah led a delegation to England to place the views of the Congress before the Secretary of State for India on the Council of India Bill. When the Bill was postponed after its second reading, Jinnah remarked: “India is perhaps the only member of the British Empire without any real representation, and the only civilized country in the world that has no system of representative Government. On 14th January 1915, Gurjar Sabha held a function to felicitate Gandhiji and Kasturba Gandhi under the Chairmanship of Jinnah. Jinnah in his speech said: “Mr. and Mrs Gandhi deserved not only the welcome of the Gurjar Sabha, not only the Gujrathi, but of the whole India…For a woman to standby her husband, share his trials and sufferings and sacrifices and even to go to jail was a model of womanhood of which any country would be proud… Such a son of India and such a daughter of India had not only raised the reputation of India, but had vindicated the honour of this great and ancient land…” In his Provincial Presidential address in to the Bombay 1916 at Conference held October

Ahmedabad, Jinnah said: “….The key to the real progress lies in the goodwill, concord, harmony and cooperation between the two great sister communities. Lucknow Pact: The Indian National Congress and the All India Muslim League held their sessions in December 1916 at Lucknow. Yet Gandhiji was not on scene.

23

The Lucknow session of the Congress and the Muslim League ended with the Congress-League agreement, which came to be known as “Lucknow Pact.” Tilak, Jinnah and Annie Besant emerged as the architects of the Lucknow Pact. Rowlett Bills: In protest of the passing of the Rowlett Bills, Jinnah resigned from the Imperial Legislative Council and said: “…The Government that passes or sanctions such a law in times of peace forfeits its claim to be called a civilized Government.” In an attempt to shift the blame on Gandhiji, often cited is Jinnah’s opposition to Gandhiji’s methods, but then initially many of us had not approved methods of Gandhiji, because they were accustomed to passing annual resolutions only. In fact Gandhiji started Civil Disobedience in August 1920 and in a speech in September 1920 Jinnah almost endorsed Gandhiji. To quote: “We will have to think about some course of action more efficient than passing of resolutions of disapproval and we shall surely find a way alike France and Egypt.” Alarmed by growing Hindu-Muslim unity in the wake of Khilafat, British had started cultivating Jinnah, in particular and the Muslim League in general. In his presidential address to the All India Muslim League session held in 1923 at Lahore Jinnah said: “India will get Dominion Republic Government, the day Hindus and Muslims are united. Swaraj is almost interchangeable term with Hindu-Muslim unity. If we wish to be free people, let us unite, but if we wish to continue slaves of bureaucracy, let us fight amongst

24

ourselves and gratify petty vanity over petty matters, Englishmen being our arbiters.” Gandhi, just released from jail commented: “I agree with Mr. Jinnah that Hindu-Muslim unity means Swaraj.” In all parties conference held in November 1924 at Bombay Jinnah said: “the dispute between the Hindus and Muslims was a question, which had been a terrible monster in the way of country’s progress. It was not for the Hindus or Muslims alone to ask what they wanted, it was up to everyone to try and find a solution to the question. Without removing this terrible obstacle, they could not make any progress in any direction.” On the floor of the Central Assembly in 1925, Jinnah said: “I am a nationalist first, a nationalist second and a nationalist last. Simon Commission: Jinnah’s feelings on Simon Commission were so bitter that he declared: “…Jalianwala Bagh was a physical butchery, the Simon Commission is a butchery of our souls….” He was as firm as a rock in boycotting the Simon Commission. Proposals were made that the boycott should be only political and not social. Jinnah did not budge an inch and said: “Boycott is boycott and it must be total and complete.” At 1928, Congress Session presided over by Motilal Nehru in Calcutta Jinnah’s speech on HinduMuslim unity on Nehru Report was not received in right spirit by Sikhs, Hindu Mahasabha and a section of the Congress. They shouted that Jinnah represented only a section of musalmans, who are communal minded, and undue importance should not be given to him. Jinnah

25

returned to Bombay from the convention with a deep wound in his heart. With tears in his eyes, he told his Parsi friend Jamshed Nusserwanjee, at Calcutta railway station “Jamshed, this is the parting of the ways.” Jinnah left the Congress never to return to it again. M.C. Chagla, in his book, “Roses In December,” writes: “Jinnah’s attitude began to change from then on though the final steps which converted him from the nationalist into communalist came much later.” Dfferences begin to widen: Shri Sheshrao Chavan has enumerated as to how and when Jinnah started drifting away from the Congress and its leaders and the issues on which he came out openly. Home Rule League: When Jinnah resigned from the Home Rule League in protest of Gandhi’s arbitrary action in converting the Home Rule League in Swarajya Sabha, Gandhi wrote to Jinnah to reconsider his resignation to take his share in the new life opened up before the country and benefit the country by his experience and guidance. Turning down the request, Jinnah wrote to Gandhi: “If by new life you mean your methods and your program, I cannot accept them; for, I am fully convinced that it must lead to disaster. Your methods have already caused split and division in every institution that you have approached hitherto, and in the public life of the country, not only amongst Hindus and Hindus and Muslims and Muslims, but even between fathers and sons; your extreme program has for the moment struck the imagination of the inexperienced youth and the

26

ignorant and the illiterate.” Jinnah further wrote: “The only way for the nationalists is to unite and work for a program, which is universally acceptable for the early attainment of complete responsible Government. Such a program cannot be dictated by any single individual, but must have the approval and support of all the prominent nationalist leaders of the country.” This was the beginning of Jinnah’s differences with Gandhi. Nagpur Session of Congress: The annual sessions of the Indian National Congress and the All India Muslim League were held in December 1920 at Nagpur. Gandhi moved a resolution proposing the attainment of Swaraj by all legitimate and peaceful means. Jinnah objected the resolution saying that it was impractical and dangerous to dissolve the British connections without greater preparations for independence. But Jinnah was shouted and voted down. Yet Jinnah continued to work for Hindu-Muslim unity and did not leave Congress. British had silently but surely started working on Jinnah and also for Hindu-Muslim division on communal lines. Ramsay MacDonald to secure greater cooperation from Jinnah gave him hint that in view of the forthcoming changes in India, the British Government would be looking for distinguished Indians for appointment as Provincial Governors. As a sharp reaction to this, Jinnah told MacDonald that his services were not available for sale and firmly rejected the offer, which he believed was nothing short of an attempt to bribe him.

27

Second Round Table Conference: Jinnah had returned to India a few days prior to the second Round Table Conference. In a speech at Bombay, he said: “I am an Indian first and a Muslim afterwards. But at the same time no Indian can serve this country, if he neglects the interests of the Muslims. Seventy million Muslims cannot be tied hand and foot in a constitution where Hindus can tyrannise over and deal with them as they like. No body could hope to make India strong by suppressing the vital interests and political aspirations of Muslims and untouchables, and people trying to indulge in such manoevres were only leading India to weak and degrading position from which it would be hard for her to recover… Hindus are foolish…utterly foolish in their attitude…Unless certain reasonable safe-guards and brakes were provided for the purpose of preventing any undue mischief, the constitution would not work.” Nehru wrote to Gandhiji: “If I had to listen to Jinnah talking the most unmitigated non-sense about his 14 points for any length of time, I would have to consider the desirability of returning to the South Sea Island.” Gandhiji attended the Second Round Table Conference as a sole representative of the Congress. The deliberations of the Conference have been narrated in detail by the author and how it ended in the declaration of the Communal Award by Ramsay McDonald. Jinnah decides to settle in London:

28

Jinnah was not included in the Third Round Table Conference. As a result, he was disheartened and decided to settle in London. He told a Muslim student in Oxford: “The Hindus are short sighted and incorrigible. The Muslim camp is full of spineless people, who will consult the Deputy Collector about what they should do. Where between these two groups is any place for a man like me.” He purchased a house in London and started flourishing practice in Privy Council. He also aspired to becoming a Labour Member of the House of Commons. In July 1933, Liaqat Ali and his Brahmin wife during their stay in London urged upon Jinnah to return to India to put new life in the Muslim League to save it. Jinnah advised the husband and wife to go back to India and survey the situation; test the feelings of people in all parts of the country and inform him. Liaqat Ali did as he was advised and sent his report to Jinnah with a request to return to India. Permanent President of Muslim League: While in London, Muslim League unanimously elected Jinnah as its permanent president. He was also elected to the Imperial Legislative Assembly unopposed from the Muslim Constituency of Bombay. Jinnah came to India in January 1935 to attend the first meeting of the Assembly. In his speech Jinnah forcefully said: “…It may be that our Hindu friends are not satisfied with the Communal Award, but at the same time, Muslims are not satisfied with it either…We must face the question as a political problem; we must solve it and not evade it.” Jinnah hoped that the Congress would overcome the extreme attitude of Hindu Maha Sabha and assure the Muslims that it is not going to be a Hindu government,

29

but an Indian Government, in which the Muslims will not only have a fair and just treatment but also that they will be treated as the equals of the Hindus. Jinnah’s speech in the Assembly raised a hope for the settlement of the communal problem by mutual agreement. Dr. Rajendra Prasad, who was Congress President also made sincere efforts for an agreed solution, but they failed to evolve a formula, which could satisfy all parties. They, ultimately issued the following statement: “We regret that in spite of our best efforts, we have not been able to find a formula…We can only hope that forces will arise, which will make a future attempt more fruitful.” Jinnah told the Associated Press: “Nothing will give me greater happiness than to bring about complete cooperation community Government.” 1937 Elections: Flushed with pride and arrogance at the overwhelming success in 1937 elections to the Provincial Assemblies, Jawaharlal Nehru declared: “In the political evolution of the country, there are only two parties-the British and the Congress that counted.” Jinnah shot back: “There is a third party in the country and that is Muslim League, whom the Congress will ignore at its own risk and peril.” Jinnah maintained this posture with vehemance until everyone realized that there would be no and in friendship their between for Hindus national and selfMuslims… Musalmans are in no way behind any other demand

30

settlement in India that left the Muslim League and Jinnah out. Jinnah launched a vigorous counter propaganda, which was so effective that in a number of bye-elections in Muslim constituencies, the Congress candidates had to meet defeat. Having seen the position and respect Aga Khan enjoyed at Round Table Conferences, Jinnah was in search of new identity that can satisfy his ego, his desire to be number one after British left. Though, he was sure that in a battle for power, Gandhi will never be in his competition, but that Nehru will always see that he becomes number one after British-a case of personal egos, ambitions and to do anything to achieve goal. His friends both in Muslim League and among British encouraged Jinnah. Nationalist turns into Communalist: Lucknow Session of the Muslim League-1937: Lucknow session of the Muslim League in 1937 marked the birth of the new Jinnah, converting the “Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim Unity,” into staunch communalist. Sir Mohamad Iqbal wrote to Jinnah urging upon him the necessity of redistributing the country and providing one or more Muslim States with absolute majority. Iqbal further wrote to Jinnah: “You are the only Muslim in India today to whom the community has right to look up for safe guidance through the storm which is coming to the North-West India and perhaps to the whole of India.” Jinnah heeded this letter of Iqbal in his speech on 15th October 1937 at Lucknow. He said: “…the Congress policy would result in class bitterness and

31

communal war and strengthening of the Imperialistic hold. He further said: “The present leadership of the Congress has been responsible for alienating the Musalmans of India more and more, by pursuing a policy which is exclusively Hindu. They have by their words, deeds and programs have shown that the Musalmans cannot expect any justice or fairplay at their hands. Jinnah made an appeal to the Muslims in which he said: “…Do not be disturbed by the slogans and the taunts such as are used against the Musalmanscommunalist, toadies, and reactionaries. The most wicked communalist today amongst Muslims, when he surrenders unconditionally to the Congress and abuses his own community, becomes the nationalist of nationalists tomorrow! Eighty millions of Musalmans in India have nothing to fear. They have their destiny in their own hands.” Maulana Hasrat Mohini moving the resolutionm for full independence of India said: “Those who believe that Jawaharlal Nehru was above communalism or that he was the man who will solve the communal problem by bringing lasting amity and unity between the Hindus and Muslims, either were living in fools paradise or are the enemy of Islam in India.” Jawaharlal Nehru described the Lucknow League session as the last ditch of the political reaction. In a crushing reply to Nehru and the Congress, Jinnah said: “The Congress far from being a national organization became a symbol of Hindu revivalism and the Hindu Raj for the exploitation and suppression of minorities. The Brahmin hierarchy and the British bureaucracy entered

32

into an unholy alliance. The Congress wanted to establish an authoritative, totalitarian and Fascist Hindu Raj. They were striving their utmost to delude Muslims into believing that the League was an ally of imperialism and imperialistic Government. No where in my career, I have allied myself with imperialism, out side or in side the Legislature. The League would not be ally of any one except the Muslim nation.” In his address to the Jamait-ul-Ulema conference in Delhi, Jinnah said: “I am not afraid of being called a communalist, because I am helping my community. I am helping eighty million Muslims of India and if they are more organized, they will be all the more useful for the national struggle.” During negotiations with Subhash Chandra Bose in April 1938, Jinnah put forward the claim that the Muslim League must be accepted as the authoritative and representative organization of the Musalmans and since then onwards he kept on harping on it. But the Congress never accepted this claim of Jinnah. Addressing the Provincial Muslim
th

League

conference of Sind at Karachi on 8

October 1938

Jinnah said: “Truth is suppressed and falsehood is broadcast in the Congress press and news agencies. Congress has adopted the most brutal, oppressive and inimical attitude towards the All India Muslim League since they secured majority in six provinces. The foolish policy of the Congress is responsible not only for intense bitterness between the two sister communities, but among the various clashes and conflicts and ill-will.” Creator of Pakistan:

33

The All India Muslim League at its historical session held in 1940 at Lahore adopted the famous resolution, which came to be known as, “Pakistan Resolution.” The author has reproduced the resolution with the speech of Jinnah, which he concluded by saying: “No power on earth can prevent Pakistan.” And true to his words, he saw Pakistan created in his lifetime, which he least expected. Jawaharlal Nehru wrote of the Lahore Resolution as Jinnah’s fantastic proposals, reading it as a cat’s paw of British Imperial duplicity. Jinnah made a proposal to the Viceroy on 1st July at Simla in which he reiterated his demand for the partition of India and insisted that the Muslim leaders should be associated as equal partners in the Government, both at the center and the provinces and for the duration of the war the Executive Council of the Viceroy be expanded to include at least as many Muslim members as Hindus. Jinnah, in his presidential address to the Muslim league on 12th April 1941 at Madras said: “We have defined in the clearest language our goal and the goal is Pakistan.” To the Muslim Students Federation on 26th December 1941 at Nagpur, Jinnah said: “The Muslim League has given you the goal which is going to lead you to the promised land where we shall establish our Pakistan.” In his speech at Calcutta on 13th February 1942 after hoisting the Muslim League Flag, Jinnah said: “Up to the present moment, the Muslims were absolutely demoralized. Our blood had become cold, our flesh was not capable of working and the Muslim nation was dead. Today, we find that our blood circulation is

34

improving. Our flesh is getting stronger and above all, our mind is getting more clarified.” Addressing the Bengal Provincial Muslim League Conference, Jinnah said: “We are going through a life and death struggle. We have many opponents. We must stand on our own legs and rely on our own strength, if we have to achieve anything in this world.” Muslim League Chief Ministers of Punjab and Sind were not at all favourably inclined to creation of Pakistan. At the request of Jinnah, and to oblige him to further their diabolic plans for division of this country, it was the Viceroy, who pursued them to support Jinnah. Quit India: The Congress Working Committee at its meeting held at Wardha on 14th July resolved: “The British rule in India must end immediately. Neither settlement of the communal tangle nor effective resistance to foreign aggression was possible while British authority lasted. In the alternative, the Congress would be compelled to utilize non-violent strength under the leadership of Gandhi.” As a sharp reaction to the Congress resolution, Jinnah issued a statement in which he said: “The resolution of the Congress Working Committee to launch a mass movement is the culminating point in the policy and program of Gandhi and his Hindu Congress of blackmailing the British and coercing them to concede a system of Government and transfer of power to that Government, which would establish a Hindu Raj, thereby throwing the Muslims and other minorities at the mercy of the Congress Raj.”

35

On a question from two American journalists, Gandhi said: “The two communities will come together immediately after British power comes to a final end in India.” Jinnah at once responded: “I am glad that at last Mr. Gandhi has openly declared that unity and HinduMuslim settlement can only come after the achievement of India’s independence.” The All India Congress Committee adopted a resolution calling upon the British to quit India. Gandhi, Nehru, Sardar, Azad and Kriplani and other prominent leaders were arrested on 9th August. Gandhi’s last message was: “Do or Die.” The Muslim League Working Committee on 20th August at Bombay condemned the Quit India resolution as an instrument for forcing the British and Muslims to surrender to Congress dictation, and directed the Muslims to refrain from participating in it. At a subsequent meeting, the League passed a resolution, which said that the Muslims of India were a nation and not a minority. Gandhi proceeded on 21 days fast on 10th February 1943. All Party leaders conference was held in Delhi on 19th February, which was attended by 300 representatives. Jinnah refused to attend the conference saying: “The situation arising out of Gandhi’s fast is a matter for Hindu leaders to consider and advice him accordingly.” Rajaji Formula: Jinnah refused to accept the Rajaji Formula as it did not meet the League’s full demand for Pakistan. He told the Muslim League Council that Rajaji Formula is

36

“shadow and husk, maimed and mutilated, and motheaten Pakistan.” Simla Conference: The Viceroy held a conference of prominent political leaders from 25th June to 14th July 1945 at Simla. The deep differences developed between the Congress and the League on the composition of the Viceroy’s Executive council. Jinnah demanded that the Congress could nominate all the Hindu members, but all the Muslim members must be nominees of the Muslim League. Azad vehemently opposed it and said: “The Congress has approached all political problems from a national point of view and recognized no distinction between Hindus and Muslims on political issues. It could not in any circumstances agree to be an organization of Hindus alone.” At the last meeting of the conference, Jinnah claimed parity in the Executive Council with all other parties combined. The Viceroy announced the failure of the conference on 14th July 1945. Jinnah in his statement characterized the Viceroy’s Plan as a ’snare’ and a ‘death warrant,’ for the Muslim League. He further said: “There was the combination consisting of the Gandhi-Hindu Congress who stand for India’s Hindu national independence as one India and the latest exponents of geographic unity, Lord Wavell and Glancy-Khizr, who are bent upon creating disruption among the Musalmans in the Punjab.” General Elections: The Congress with reservations decided to contest elections. The Muslim League also announced to

37

fight the elections on the issue of Pakistan and the claim of the League to represent all Muslims. The results of the elections showed that the Congress and the Muslim league were the only political parties that counted in India. The Viceroy addressed the newly elected Central Legislature emphasized on the 28th January 1946, of in His which he determination Majesty’s

Government to establish a new Executive Council and to form a constitution-making body as soon as possible. On the Viceroy’s address, Jinnah declared that the Muslim League was not prepared to consider anything short of immediate recognition of Pakistan and the League would not be prepared to cooperate in any interim arrangements until this principle has been made clear beyond all doubts and until it had been decided that there would be two constitution-making bodies, one for the Pakistan areas and the other for the rest of India. However the Viceroy told Jinnah that if he refused to participate in the interim Government, the Government would be compelled to go without the League. Cabinet Mission: The Cabinet Mission interviewed in all 472 Indian leaders in 182 sittings. In all the interviews the discussion revolved round, “United India Vs Pakistan.” Azad in his capacity as Congres President emphatically said that the Congress would never agree to the partition of India. Gandhi said that Jinnah’s Pakistan was a sin, which he would not commit.” Gandhi further said: “In his The view two-nation theory was but most for a dangerous. Muslim population,

microscopic minority was a population of converts. They

38

were all descendents of India-born peole. He was opposed to two-nation theory or to two constitutionmaking bodies.” Gandhi suggested that Jinnah should be asked to form the first Government. If Jinnah refused, then the offer should be made to the Congress. To this suggestion of Gandhi, Jinnah replied: “The Congress offer is a complete humbug. It would not work at all. We would be fighting like Kilkenny Cats all the times.” Jinnah called a convention of over 400 members of the various legislatures elected on the Muslim League tickets on 10th April at Delhi. A resolution was passed at this convention, which demanded sovereign and independent State of Pakistan, comprising the six provinces of Bengal, Assam in the North-East and the Punjab, the North-West Frontier Province, Sind and Baluchistan in the North-West of India; the setting up of two separate constitution-making bodies by the people of Pakistan and Hindustan for framing their respective constitutions and the provision of safeguards for the minorities.” Jinnah threatened that any attempt to impose a constitution or to force on them the Interim Government contrary to their demand would leave the Muslims with no alternative but to resist such imposition by all the means possible for their survival and national existence. Azad issued a statement in which he said: “The very term Pakistan goes against my grain. It suggests that some portions of the world are pure and others are impure. Such a division of pure and impure is unIslamic. Islam recognizes no such division. The prophet says, “God has made the whole world a mosque for me.”

39

Jinnah maintained that it was only when the Muslims were the majority in Pakistan and the Hindus in Hindustan that their could be sufficient united force running through the State from top to bottom to provide a steel frame which will hold it together.” Second Simla Conference: The second Simla Conference began on 5th May 1946 with four representatives each from the Congress and the Muslim League. After two days, the gulf between the Congress and the League was still as wide as ever. On 8th May, Lord Pethic Lawrence suggested his points for agreement between the Congress and the League. Jinnah informed Pethic Lawrence that the points suggested by him were a fundamental departure from the original formula suggestd by the Secretary of State for India. Therefore no useful purpose will be served by discussion on them. Azad also informed Pethic Lawrence that some of the suggestions were entirely opposed to the views of the Congress. The differences between the Congress and the League provided no hope for settlement and therefore, it was announced on 12th May that the Conference failed to bring the Congress and the League to agreement. May 16th Declaration: The Cabinet Mission declared their own scheme, which came to be known as May 16th Declaration. Jinnah issued a statement on 22nd May describing the Cabinet Mission scheme as ‘cryptic with several lacunas.’ He regretted that the Cabinet Mission should have negative the League’s demand for Pakistan.

40

Gandhi advised the Congress Working Committee on 25
th

June 1946 the wholesale rejection of the Plan. ultimately rejected the proposal for the

Nehru, Azad and Patel were for compromise. The Congress formation of Interim Government at the Centre, but accepted the long term proposal for constitution-making with its interpretation on disputed clauses. The Congress Working Committee’s decision was communicated to the Cabinet Mission on the same day. It treated the Congress decision as an acceptance of their plan of May 16th. The Working Committee of the Muslim League agreed to join the Interim Government on the basis of May 16th Plan. However, ultimately the negotiations for the formation of the Interim Government failed. The Viceroy decided to set up a care-taker Government composed of officials, who would function until such time as his efforts with the political leaders could be renewed. Nehru’s Damaging Role: Winding up the proceedings of the All India Congress Committee on 6th July 1946, Nehru in his capacity as the Congress President said: “….It was not a question of the Congress accepting any plan-long or short. It was merely a question of their agreeing to enter the Constituent Assembly and nothing more than that. They would remain in the Constituent Assembly so long as they thought that it was for India’s good and they would come out when they thought it was injuring their cause.” Nehru further said: “We are not bound by a single thing except that we have decided for the moment to go to the Constituent Assembly.” Nehru continued:

41

“We accept no out siders interference, certainly not the British Government’s interference.” With regard to Grouping, Nehru said that there would be no grouping of provinces. Jinnah characterized Nehru’s statement as the complete repudiation of the basic form on which the long-term plan rests and all its fundamentals and terms and obligations and rights of parties accepting the plan. Jinnah wrote a strictly private, personal and confidential letter on 6th July to Lord Attlee in which he said: “The British Government would still avoid compelling the Muslims to shed their blood, for, their surrender to the Congress. Its consequences will be most disastrous and a possible settlement will then become impossible.” On Congress 10th would July, Nehru the made an astonishing Assembly statement in his press conference at Bombay that the enter Constituent completely unfettered by the agreements and free to meet all situations as they arise. He further said that the Congress had agreed only to participate in the Constituent Assembly and regarded itself free to change or modify the Cabinet Mission Plan as it thought best. Reacting sharply to Nehru’s statement Jinnah said: “If the Congress could change while the British were still in the country and power had not come to its hands, what assurance would minorities have that once the British left, the Congress would not again change to go back to the position taken up in Jawaharlal’s statement.” Jinnah convened a meeting of the Working Committee of the Muslim League on 27th July 1946 in which he said: “In view of the true intention of the

42

Congress as expressed in Nehru’s statement, it was no longer possible to work in cooperation with the Congress. The League had no alternative, but to adhere once more to the national goal of Pakistan. There is no room left for compromise. Let us march on to our cherished goal of Pakistan.” Jinnah declared: “that the British and the Congress, each held a pistol in their hands, the one of authority and arms and the other of mass struggle and non-cooperation. Today, we have also forged a pistol and we are in a position to use it.” The Muslim League called upon the Muslims to observe 16th August as, Direct Action Day. Interim Government: On 6th August 1946, the Viceroy invited Nehru to submit proposal for the formation of the Interim Government on the basis of the assurance contained in his letter of 30th May to Azad. The Congress Working Committee on 8th August decided to accept the invitation extended to Nehru and authorized him to negotiate with the Viceroy. The Congress Working committee also hoped that in view of its resolution, the Muslim League will join the Interim Government. However, Jinnah stuck to his view that Nehru’s statement represented the concealed intention of the Congress and he believed that the moment the British left the country, the Hindu dominated Constituent Assembly would do away with the half way house to Pakistan. On 13th August Nehru wrote to Jinnah about Viceroy’s invitation to him and his acceptance of it. On 15th August, Jinnah replied to Nehru: “If the Viceroy had commissioned him to form an Interim Government, it was not possible for him to accept such a position.”

43

Nehru submitted a list of 12 members for the Interim Government. Two names were left to be filled by the Muslim League, if and when they joined the Government. On 24th August His majesty’s Government appointed the members of the Interim Government. The Interim Government was sworn in on 2nd September. Jinnah said that the Viceroy had struck a severe blow to the Muslim League and Muslim India. reiterated his demand for the partition of India. Nehru in his broadcast from the All India radio on 7th September said: “ The Constituent Assembly would soon be meeting to give shape to the constitution of a free and independent India. Jinnah in his interview to the ‘London Daily Mail’ on 8th September said: “Nehru had made no definite proposals to me; I have been stabbed and kind words will not stop bleeding.” The Viceroy continued his efforts to bring about settlement between Nehru and Jinnah. Jinnah set out his nine conditions for joining the Interim Government. The Viceroy sent his point wise reply to Jinnah. Exchange of correspondence took place between the Viceroy, Nehru and Jinnah, which culminated in Jinnah’s letter of 13th October to the Viceroy in which Jinnah said: “We have decided to nominate five members on behalf of the Muslim League in terms of your broadcast of 24th August 1946 and your two letters to me dated 4th and 12th October 1946 embodying clarifications and assurances.” On 25th October, names of the Muslim members of the Interim Government were announced, which included Liaqat Ali Khan, I.I.Chundrigar, Abdul Rab Nishtar and Jogendra Nath Mandal. The League He

44

members behaved and functioned as if Pakistan had already become Fait Accompli. Liaqat Ali Khan went to the extent of announcing that the Interim Government consisted of Congress bloc and the Muslim bloc each functioning under separate leadership. From the start League members acted as a parallel Government and ignored Nehru’s status as Vice President of the Council. Jinnah publicly said: “If Nehru can only come down to earth and think coolly and calmly, he must understand that he is neither Prime Minister nor it is a Nehru Government, he is only the member of the External Affairs and Commonwealth department.” Divide and Quit: The Prime Minister Clement Attlee announced in the House of Commons on 20th February 1947 that Britain would transfer power to responsible Indian hands by a date not later than June 1948. He also announced that Lord Mountbatten will succeed Lord Wavell. Lord Mountbatten was sworn in as the Viceroy and Governor General of India on 24th March 1947. Gandhi, on 1st April submitted his eight point proposal to Lord Mountbatten, which included an offer to Jinnah to form the Government and if he declined the offer, the same then should be made to the Congress. Gandhi was opposed to the whole logic of Pakistan. He said that the partition would solve none of the problems. On the contrary, it would accentuate those that were already there and create fresh ones. All except Azad told Gandhi that the partition was inescapable. Gandhi wrote a letter to the Viceroy on 11th April 1947 in which he said: “I have several talks with Nehru and a number

45

of members of the Congress Working Committee about the plan I placed before you. I am sorry to say that I have failed to carry them with me except Badsha Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan. I therefore ask you to omit me from your consideration. But Mountbatten requested Gandhi to stay on and exert his influence infavour of the acceptance of the Cabinet Mission Plan. In the course of his discussion with the party leaders, particularly Jinnah, Mountbatten was convinced that there was no prospect of agreed solution on the basis of the Cabinet Mission Plan and an attempt to resurrect it was useless. Mountbatten sent his revised plan to London with Lord Ismay and Allen Campbell on 2nd May. He received back his plan from London duly approved by the British Cabinet. Mountbatten held a meeting with Nehru and explained to him as to how the revised plan would meet his objections. The conference proposed to be convened on 17th May was postponed to 2nd June. In the meanwhile Mountbatten was called to London by Attlee. Before leaving for London. Mountbatten asked V.P.Menon to prepare a draft, “Heads of Agreement” to be shown to leaders for their acceptance. Acordingly Menon prepared a draft on 16th May. On 18th May Mountbatten left for London with Menon. The British Cabinet approved the revised plan and finalized the statement of His Majesty’s Government. It was decided that Mountbatten should present this plan to the Indian leaders on 2nd June. Mountbatten returned to India on 31st May 1947. The historic conference of seven leaders was held on 2nd June at Viceroy’s house. The Viceroy handed over

46

the copies of the statement of His Majesty’s Government to the leaders and asked them to let him know the reaction of their Working Committees by mid night. The next day on 3rd June, the Viceroy informed the Secretary of State for India the assuarance given to him by Nehru, Jinnah and Baldev Singh about the acceptance of the plan. Attlee announced the plan in the House of Commons on 3rd June. Hence it came to be known as 3rd June Plan. Prime Minister Attlee in his broadcast made that night said: “As the Indian leaders have failed to agree on the Cabinet Mission Plan for united India, partition becomes an inevitable alternative. The 3rd June Plan, he added, provided for the handing over of power that year to one or two Governments, each having Dominion Status. On the evening of 3rd June Mountbatten broadcast over All India radio in which he said: “It had been impossible to obtain agreement on the Cabinet Mission Plan or on any other plan that would preserve the unity of India. Hence it was left to the people of India themselves to decide the question of partition. Immediately thereafter, His Majesty’s Government’s statement was also broadcast and released to the press. Then followed broadcast by Nehru, Jinnah and Baldev Singh indicating their acceptance of the plan. Thus India was divided into two Sovereign States of Pakistan and India, which made Jinnah, the first Governor General of Pakistan and Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India. Who is Responsible for Partition:

47

The British were convinced that the creation of Pakistan was their absolute need and they started actively working on it. The Plan of Partition was prepared much before the arrival of Lord Mountbatten in India. He only implemented the Plan. In the meanwhile, the British with their large resources and influence started their tactics to make people all over the world believe, on one hand that they were keen to give freedom to India, but Indians were divided among themselves, on the other hand they encouraged Jinnah to become more and more vehement on his demand for Pakistan. Jinnah was most egoistic and wanted nothing short of Prime Ministership of independent India. Gandhiji sensed this and that is why he proposed that Jinnah should be made the first Prime Minister, if partition could be avoided thereby. Gandhji’s proposal was not simple as it apparently appeared. It was a shrewd and far-sighted move. Gandhiji knew that Jinnah was in the last stage of T.B. and would not survive more than a year. Gandhiji also knew that after British left, Congress will remain in majority and can largely influence future constitution once interested brokers (British) left. Had Gandhiji’s proposal been accepted, the partition of India could have been avoided. But his heir Jawaharlal Nehru was not prepared to wait for a moment to be the first Prime Minister of independent India. Nehru and Patel had accepted partition. Before they said yes to it, they neither consulted All India Congress Committee nor Gandhiji. Gandhiji was shocked when he came to know. His instant reaction was: “Every one today, is impatient for independence.”

48

Nehru had told Michael Brecher: “We saw no other way of getting our freedom and so we accepted partition. Nehru also told Leonard Mosley: “We were tired men and we were getting on years too. The plan of partition offered a way out and we took it.” Even Maulana Abul Kalam Azad said: “Nehru’s action gave the Muslim League in U.P. a new lease of life. Jinnah took full advantage of the situation and started an offensive, which ultimately led to Pakistan.” Nehru in his broadcast on 3rd June revealed his mind when he said: “I am convinced that our decision to divide India is the right one.” Later 1949-50, he said: “We were anxious to have freedom as quickly as possible, so we agreed for partition, but subsequently he admitted that the partition could have been avoided. Sardar Patel was so frustrated and disgusted by Jinnah and his League that he wanted to get rid of both. He said: “Whatever some people may say, I am convinced and remain convinced that our having agreed to partition has been for the good of the country. And therefore, partition.” Shri Sheshrao Chavan says that Gandhiji should have remained firm on his stand and statements. But in my opinion, had he done so there would have been mass revolt against Nehru and Patel, in particular and the Congress in general. Gandhiji being a practical visionary realized this and suppressing his conscience told the All India Congress Committee on 14th June 1947: “…You must remember that the country needs most today is peace. If you are sure that your rejection of the scheme will not lead to further breach of peace and further I have never repented my agreeing to

49

disorder, you can do so… The country is already divided in two camps. If I felt strong enough myself, I would alone take up the flag of revolt. But today I do not see the conditions for doing so… Sometimes certain decisions, however unpalatable they might be had to be taken.” British apart from their usual policy of divide and rule had direct interest in partition of this country. By early 1947, the British chiefs of staff had become enthusiastic proponents of Pakistan that would cooperate with Britain in military matters. ON 12th May 1947 General Leslie Hollis wrote to Prime Minister Clement Attlee who wanted to deal with western India first of all. From the strategic point of view there are overwhelming Pakistan arguments in in the favour of a western i.e. remaining Commonwealth

maintaining defense ties with Britain. He put forward the following points to buttress his views: 1. We should obtain important strategic facilities such as the port of Karachi and air bases-in North West India and the support of Muslim manpower. 2. We should be able to ensure the continued independence and integrity of Afganistan. 3. We should increase our prestige and improve our position throughout the Muslim World, and demonstrate, by the assistance Pakistan would receive, the advantages of links with the British Commonwealth. 4. Our attack link by with Pakistan on might have a stabilizing effect on India as a whole, since an Hindustan Pakistan would

50

involve Hindustan in war, not with Pakistan alone, but also with the British Commonwealth. 5. The position on the Frontier might well become more settled since relations between the tribes and Pakistan would be easier than they could be with a united India. When second world war started, while initially Gandhiji supported British, Jinnah went a long way and told the Viceroy to turn the Congress ministries out at once. He told the Viceroy: “….Their object is nothing less than to destroy both you British and us Muslims. They will never stand by you.” He advised that Muslim areas should be separated from Hindu India and run by Muslims in collaboration with Great Britain. British had also started thinking in terms of post-war equations, and wanted an ally against likely spread of influence up to Iran. They knew that nationalist Indian leaders can never be their stooges while Jinnah can be relied. Hence it was a part of global conspiracy by British. They finally decided on partition after second world war. Shri Sheshrao Chavan in preparing this book, has taken great pains and has come out with a very valuable and authentic information, which will feed readers with correct and unbiased history. He has not dealt with the matter in a stereotyped manner but has delved deep into the record of these historic events and focused light on them without fear or favour. I think that this book would create fresh awareness of very significant period of India’s history and will help readers to form their own opinion as to who were the really responsible for the Partition of our Mother land into India and Pakistan.

51

History can and should never, as Sheshrao Chavan has shown respect individuals but only facts though some time not to one’s liking.

Dhiru S. Mehta

APPRAISAL
When, in a different context, Winston Churchill spoke about a mystery wrapped in an enigma he did not, of course, have Mohammad Ali Jinnah in mind though the description fits the founder of Pakistan well enough. And yet anyone who had followed Indian history from 1900 and the background to the development and sharp changes in the course of Jinnah’s life would surely have predicted his stand on Pakistan and on the Two-Nation Theory. The changes that took place in his life were painfully drastic. But, in retrospect, were predictable. When Mohammad Ali Jinnah returned to India in the autumn of 1896 as a young barrister in his twenties and set up his legal practice in Mumbai, he was a staunch nationalist. When he began his political career with attending the 20 th session of the Indian National Congress in December 1904 he was captivated by the wisdom, fairness and moderation of Gopal Krishna Gokhale that he was to tell his friends that his ambition was to become the “Muslim Gokhale.” At that time nobody could possibly have predicted the future. Here was a man who stood by Bal Gangadhar Tilak and defended him when charged with sedition. Again it was in appreciation of Jinnah’s

52

commitment to Hindu-Muslim unity that the people of Mumbai joined hands to set up Jinnah Hall through public subscription. All that became things of the past when, at the Nagpur Session of the Congress the man who was once hailed as the champion of Hindu-Muslim unity was hooted out with cries of “Shame, Shame.” A transformation was then to take place in Jinnah’s life and thought. Born was a new communalist who, in an address to the students of the Aligarh Muslim University in February 1938 could say: “The Congress policy is to divide the Muslims among themselves. It is the same old tactics of the British Government. They follow the policy of their masters. Do not fall into their trap.” Jinnah had turned against his own past. Such was his hatred towards the Congress that when Congress ministries in five provinces resigned in 1939, he could call for a “Day of Deliverance” on 22nd December 1939. After that, for Jinnah there was no going back. What Sheshrao Chavan has done in his highly dramatic but painstakingly authentic work is to trace the changes that had taken place in Jinnah’s political philosophy, year, by year, step by step. Reading it is to wipe one’s tears from one’s eyes. The man who stood for national unity had become a vicious advocate of Pakistan based on the theory that Hindus and Muslims cannot live together in amity and Muslims, in the circumstances, needed a separate State of their own, Pakistan. Chavan records with dedicated objectivity what happened since 1939 such as the arrival in India in 1942 of the Cripps Mission, the conflict within the Congress over the Cripps’ offer, the manner in which

53

negotiations between the Government of India and the political parties broke down, the passing by the Congress of Quit India Resolution and what followed, ending with the arrival of the Cabinet Mission in India on 24th March 1946. What subsequently followed is history much too close to us. To dismiss it as pathetic is to say the obvious. In the end India was partitioned. Pakistan came into being and Jinnah had his revenge against the Congress, against Gandhi and against Nehru. Jinnah left Delhi for Karachi on 7th August 1947 to take over charge as the first Governor-General of Pakistan. On arrival in Karachi, and walking up the steps of the Government House, Jinnah was to tell a Naval Officer who accompanied him: “Do you know, I never expected Pakistan in my life time.”

The man who said Hindus and Muslims could never live together had a last message to Muslims in India. It was to the effect that they should remain loyal citizens of India! Even more significantly in his first address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan, Jinnah was to say, miracle of miracles, that in the newly formed Pakistan their should be no distinction between one community and another and that if that ideal was maintained “in course of time Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in a religious sense because that is the personal faith of each individual, but in the political sense as citizens of State…” And this was the man who

54

insisted that Hindus and Muslims could not live together.
The setting up of Pakistan is the beginning of the third phase of Jinnah’s political career. He had again become a changed man. He was leading people to believe that he had abandoned the Two-Nation Theory and wanted Pakistan to be a Secular State. Indeed, he was even to admit that he had committed the biggest blunder of his life and wanted to go back to India. He is reported to have told Sri Prakasa, the first Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan to convey to Nehru not to requisition his house in Bombay because he desired to return to live in it! This is Jinnah’s “Third Face,” inexplicable and yet students of history will say, basing that assessment of Jinnah’s mountainous ego, inevitable.

Says Chavan himself: “Why did he (Jinnah) convert himself from an Ambassador of HinduMuslim Unity to the creator of Pakistan? The reply, according to me is, it was only for psychological satisfaction to show that he was more than a match to Gandhi, Nehru, Patel and Azad put together, because they had hurt him in one way or the other and did not give him recognition as he expected.” Chavan’s own assessment is that Gandhi, Nehru and Patel were equally responsible for creating a feeling of separation in Jinnah’s mind….” Reading this absorbing book one feels like shading tears, the reader is invited to read this painful recounting of

55

history but to keep a towel by one’s side. There is no way one can escape crying.

M.V.Kamath

INTRODUCTION
Jinnah was held as an ambassador of HinduMuslim unity by no less a person than Mahatma Gandhi’s guru, Gopal Krishna Gokhale and Florence Nightingale of India Sarojini Naidu. Jinnah made sincere efforts to prove worthy of it-nay developed an ambition to become Muslim Gokhale. why such a man turned to be a communalist from a nationalist and went to the extent of saying that Hindus and Muslims cannot live together. And therefore, India should be divided to provide home land for Muslims. This is the theme of this book. The introduction highlights the turning points in Jinnah’s life, which reveal three faces of Jinnah; 1. Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity 2. Creator of Pakistan and 3. Repentant for his blunder in creating Pakistan. The last chapter of the book deals with as to who are responsible for partition of India. The first turning point came in the life of Jinnah when he was howled down with cries of ‘shame, shame at the 1920 session of the Indian National Congress at Nagpur right in the presence of his

56

sweat-heart Ruttie. Jinnah left Nagpur by first available train. But remained in congress. The second turning point was when his amendments to the Nehru Report were turned down at the All Parties Conference held in 1928 at Calcutta and he was branded as a representative of communal Muslims by Sikhs, Hindu Mahasabha and a section of the Congress in the audience. Jinnah left Calcutta and Congress with a deep wound in his heart. Yet continued to work for Hindu-Muslim unity and claim himself to be an Indian first, an Indian second and an Indian last. The third turning point was when Jawaharlal Nehru, intoxicated with the results of the 1937 elections to the Provincial Legislatures in favour of Congress declared: “In the political evolution of the country, there are only two parties-the British and the Congress.” Jinnah retorted: “There is a third party in the country and that is the Muslim League, whom the Congress will ignore at its own risk and peril.” The fourth turning point was 1940 session of the Muslim League at Lahore, where a resolution termed as, “Pakistan Resolution” was passed and Jinnah on the top of his voice pronounced that no power on earth can prevent Pakistan. Nehru called Lahore Resolution as Jinnah’s fantastic proposal, reading it as a cat’s paw of British Imperial duplicity and said, we have nothing to do with this mad scheme. This was enough for Jinnah to convert himself from a nationalist to a rabid communalist.

57

Disowned by the Congress, humiliated by Nehru, Jinnah allowed himself to be used by the British. But in turn he exploited British to strengthen his demand for Pakistan. His Majesty’s Government declared in 1940 that their responsibility would not be transferred to any Government, whose authority was directly denied by a large and powerful elements in India. This declaration made Jinnah the sole spokesman of the Muslim League, thus virtually according him veto power. He came out openly with two-nation theory and made it the only point of agreement for settlement. Jinnah recognition was of invited the to broadcast President a special as the message on the occasion of the Id festival-an explicit League spokesman of Muslim community. Never before was Jinnah a man of the masses. He distrusted them. To exclude them from political power, he was always for a high franchise. He was never known to be very devout, pious or a professing Muslim. Besides kissing the Holy Quran as and when he was sworn in as a member of the Legislative Assembly, he did not appear to have bothered much about its contents or its special tenets. It is doubtful whether he frequented any mosque either out of curiosity or religious fervour. He was never found in the midst of Muslim congregation, religious or political. But since Jinnah became protagonist advocate of Pakistan, he became a man of the masses. He was no longer above them. He was among them. Masses raised him above themselves and called him Quid-e-

58

Azam. He not only became a believer in Islam, but was prepared to die for Islam. He knew more of Islam than mere Kalama. He went to the mosque to hear Khutba. Jinnah began to learn Urdu and to don the ‘Sherwani’ with gold button engraved with ‘P’ to his collar and a black lamb cap, which came to be known as ‘JinnahCap,’ for official photographs, actions reminiscent of what that old saw from the French Revolution: “I am their leader, I must follow them.” Linlithgow-Jinnah Alliance in 1940 was the first step that opened the way for the creation of Pakistan. Churchill’s idea of the, ‘provincial option,’ in 1942 was the second step towards this goal. And Attlee’s statement Pakistan. Lord Mountbatten with his charm, skill and persuasiveness got the Congress to agree to partition and prepared Jinnah to yield to truncated Pakistan. Mountbatten’s master stroke was to win over Mahatma Gandhi, which is evident from what Gandhi said in his prayer meeting. He said: “…The British Government is not responsible for partition. The Viceroy Mountbatten has no hand in it. If both of us, Hindus and Muslims cannot agree on anything else then the Viceroy is left with no choice.” The two sovereign states of Pakistan and India saw their birth on 14th August 1947 and 15th August 1947 respectively. Jinnah was certainly responsible for the partition of India on the cry of two-nation theory, which was in of 20th February 1947 in British Parliament was a green signal for the creation of

59

fact

voiced by Sir Syed Ahmed Khan way back in

1888. Jinnah only echoed it to satiate his ego to remain number one. But the triumvirate-Gandhi, Nehru and Patel are equally responsible. Nehru for his ambition to become the first Prime Minister of free and independent India; Sardar to remain King Maker; Gandhi for his exhaustion in the evening of his life to create a new set of leaders to launch a movement to adhere to his vow that the vivisection of India will be over his dead body. While aiming to help the reader by placing before him all the material relevant, and important, the reader will find that I have not sought to impose my opinion on him. However, the reader may complain that I have been provocative in stating the relevant facts. I am conscious that such a charge may be leveled against me. My excuse is that I have no intention to hurt anybody. I have only one purpose, that is, to focus the attention of the indifferent and casual reader on the issues dealt with in the book. I request the reader to put aside any irritation that he may feel with me and concentrate his thoughts on the question: Who are responsible for the partition of India? Can Pakistan and India live as good neighbours? And Can Hindus and Muslims live in harmony in India?

Sheshrao Chavan

60

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
The credit of this book goes to Shri L.K.Advani, India’s former Home Minister and President of the Bharatiya Janta Party. His statement on Jinnah during his visit to Pakistan provoked me to make in-depth study of Jinnah and his determination to create Pakistan to be its first Governor General. I have studied the books written by authors referred to in the book at the appropriate places. I record my deep sense of gratitude to them and their publishers. Besides, I have gone through several other books, manuscripts and documents to make the book as authentic as possible. I acknowledge one and all with my profuse thanks. I feel honoured to have ‘Foreword’ from Padmabhushan Dr. L.H.Hiranandani. Dr. Hiranandani is recipient of Padmabhushan, Dhanwantri Award, Golden Award from International Federation of Oto-Laryinology. ( the first Indian Surgeon and the fifth in the world to get it) and the prestigious SAARC–ENT- Award.

61

Dr. Hiranandani, in his heart in heart desires that India and Pakistan should live in peace as good neighbors. He was sent as an emissary of the then Prime Minister of India Shri Deve Gowda to Pakistan with his proposal to convert the Line of Control (LOC) into an International Border. But before his proposal was considered, Deve Gowda Government collapsed. I came in contact with Dr. Hiranandani only six months back, but I feel that I have known him for agesmay be this has some thing to do with the previous birth, in which I firmly believe. I have no words to thank Dr. L.H. Hiranandani for taking pains to read every line of the manuscript to write ‘Foreword’ at his ninety years of age. He is old in age, but amazingly young in spirit with razor sharp memory and a heart full of love and compassion. I am beholden to Shri Dhiru S. Mehta for his Preface. Shri Mehta is a true Gandhian. He carried Gandhian legacy from his father-in-law and mother-inlaw Shri Radhakrishna Bajaj and Smt. Anusaya Bajaj respectively, who need no introduction for their close associations with Mahatma Gandhi and Vinoba Bhave. Shri Mehta is President of the Kasturba Gandhi National Memorial Trust, which runs 450 centers in India for the welfare of women and children. He is also a Trustee of the Gujrath Vidyapeeth founded by Mahatma Gandhi at Ahemadabad and Vice President of Mani Bhavan Sanghralaya, where Gandhiji used to stay in Mumbai. I feel obliged to have Preface to the book from such an illustrious son of India. I deem it privilege to have Appraisal from Padmabhushan Shri M.V.Kamath.

62

Shri Kamath has had a long career as a reporter, foreign correspondent and editor, having served in Mumbai, Bonn, Paris, Geneva, United Nations, New York and Washington DC. He himself has authored over 40 books on a wide range of subjects including history, biography, politics, journalism and fiction. His Memoirs, “A Reporter at Large,” is an immense source of inspiration to journalists and readers, young and old all over the world. He is recipient of several prestigious Awards, the latest being “Padmabhushan”. He is President of the Prasar Bharati of Government of India. I am indebted to Padmashri Shri Muzzaffar Husain, critic, writer and doyen of journalists for his valuable information on Jinnah and working of the mind of Jinnah. I have had benefit of discussion with Prof. K.D. Gangrade, Dr. Savita Singh and Dr. R.B. Chavan from Delhi; Prof. Moazziz Ali Beg and Prof. Umeshchandra Vashistha from Lucknow; Dr. Aloo Dastur, Padmashri Dr. R.T. Doshi, Major General E. D’ Souza, Shri Madhu Deolekar, Shri Azgar Ali Engineer, Mr. and Mrs. Kekoo Gandhi, Shri Nandkumar Moghe and Shri Prakash Almeida from Mumbai; Dr.J.S. Sardar and Shri G.R. Rege from Aurangabad, I extend my thanks to all of them. I have special thanks for Shri Ghanshyam Ajgaonkar and his Librarian for providing me books I needed from Mani Bhavan Library. I am obliged to my grand daughter Miss Nikita for layout and final print out of the manuscript on computer. I place my appreciation on record for the assistance given to me by my grand daughters Apurva and Rucha and also grand son Anurag.

63

My thanks are due to all those who have directly or indirectly helped me in the preparation of this book.

Sheshrao Chavan

64

AMBASSADOR OF HINDU MUSLIM UNITY

Jinnah has true stuff in him, and that Freedom from all sectarian prejudice which will make him the best ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity. Gopal Krishna Gokhale

Mohammad Ali Jinnah returned to India in the autumn of 1896 as a young barrister in his twenties and set up his legal practice in Mumbai. During the years of his success as a lawyer, Mrs. Sarojini Naidu, who was hailed as the Nightingale of Bombay wrote of Jinnah: “Never was there a nature whose outer qualities provided so complete an antithesis of its inner worth. Tall and stately, but thin to the point of emaciation, languid and luxurious of habit, Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s attenuated form is the deceptive sheath of a spirit of exceptional vitality and endurance. Some what formal and fastidious, and a little aloof and imperious of manner, the calm hauteur of his accustomed reserve but masks-for those who know him-a naïve and eager humanity, an intuition quick and tender as a woman’s, a humour gay and winning as a child’s. Pre-eminently rational and practical, discreet and dispassionate in his estimate and acceptance of life, the obvious sanity and serenity of his worldly wisdom effectually disguise a shy and splendid idealism which is the very essence of the man.”

65

Jinnah’s political career began with attending the twentieth session of the Indian National Congress in December 1904 at Bombay. He met Gopal Krishna Gokhale first at this session. At the very first meeting, Jinnah was so captivated by the wisdom, fairness and moderation of Gokhale, that he became his ardent admirer and later stated that his fond ambition is to become the “Muslim Gokhale.” Phirozshah Mehta, who chaired the reception committee of this twentieth session, was so impressed by the performance of Jinnah that he proposed that Gokhale and Jinnah be sent as deputies to London, the following year to lobby what he and other well informed observers of Britain’s political climate correctly anticipated would be the new liberal government in Westminster and Whitehall. Gokhale, who was to preside over the next session of the Congress seemed an obvious choice, but with regard to Jinnha, who was still unknown to most congress delegates, enough questions were raised to hold up release of any funds for his passage. In 1906, Dadabhai Naoroji came down from England to preside over the Calcutta session of the Indian National Congess. Jinnah attended the congress as a delegate and acted as a Private Secretary to the President. Dadabhai was too weak to read the address himself that Jinnah had helped write. In his address, which was read by Gokhale, Dadabahi called for a thorough political union among the Indian people of all creeds and classes and said: “I appeal to the Indian people for this because it is in their own hands. They

66

have in them the capacity, energy and intellect to hold their own and to get their due share in all walks of life of which the State Services are but a small part. State Services are not everything. Once self-government is attained, then there will be prosperity for all, but not till then. The thorough union, therefore, of all the people for their emancipation is an absolute necessity. They must sink or swim together. Without this union, all efforts will be vain.” The address of Dadabhai Naoroji ended with fervent plea for unity. He said: “Be united, persevere and achieve self-government, so that the millions persisting by poverty, famine and plague, and the scores of millions that are starving on scanty subsistence may be saved, and India once more occupy her proud position of yore among the greatest and civilized nations of the world.” The Grand Old man, in his eighty-first year became a warrior. His slogan, “SWARAJ,” was writ on the new banner of Congress. Jinnah echoed this theme of national unity at every political meeting he attended during the next ten years and emerged as “Ambassador of Hind-Muslim unity.” Sarojini Naidu, who met Jinnah first at the Calcutta Congress said: “In 1906, when I met Jinnah in Calcutta at the historic sessions of the national congress where Dadabhai Naoroji first enunciated the glorious ideal of “Swaraj” -Self-government for India, Mohd Ali Jinnah, for the moment acting as Private Secretary to his old master, was already accounted a rising lawyer and a coming politician. For, true to his early teaching, and fired no doubt the virile patriotism of men like the late

67

Badruddin Tyabji and lion-hearted Pherozeshah Mehta, he had long since joined the ranks of the national Congress and regularly attended its annual gatherings.” Jinnah left Calcutta inspired with his mission of advancing the cause of Hindu-Muslim unity, perceiving as few of his contemporaries did how indispensable such unity was to the new goal of SWARAJ that congress had adopted. He was politician enough to realize that his only hope of succeeding his liberal mentors and friends Dadabhai, Pherozeshah, and Gokhale as leaders of Congress was by virtue of his secular constitutional national appeal, not through his double minority status. He had risen above all parochial prejudice, a Shakespearian hero in modern garb, with the noblest imprecations of Burk, Mill, and Morley ringing in his mind, stirring his heart. Congress’s national political platform had become his new dramatic stage, grander and more exciting than Bombay’s high court. In one short decade after returning from London he had virtually emerged as heir-apparent to the Bombay triumvirate which led Congress’s slow–moving, political bullock-cart toward the promised land of freedom.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 27)

Tilak was arrested in the summer of 1908, charged with “seditious writings,” in his newspaper, ‘Kesari’ published from Poona. Tilak secured the services of Jinnah to plead for his release pending trial. Jinnah argued valiantly, but to no avail, for British justice had closed its mind to Tilak long before his trial began. Tilak was sentenced to six years rigorous imprisonment. Every Indian patriot felt that even though Tilak might have been technically guilty of the charge of sedition, the

68

sentence passed by Indian judge–Mr. Davar- was a savage one. Later an appeal, which was filed against the conviction was heard by Justice Mr. Bachelor and Justice Mr. Shah. The appeal on behalf of Tilak was argued by Jinnah and the conviction was set aside. After Justice Davar sentenced Tilak to six years rigorous imprisonment, the Government conferred a knighthood upon Davar, and the Bar Association of the High Court of Bombay wanted to give him a dinner. A circular went round asking those who wanted to join the dinner to sign it. When the circular came to Jinnah, he wrote a scathing note that the Bar should be ashamed to want to give a dinner to a judge who had obtained a knighthood by doing what the Government wanted, and by sending a great patriot to jail with a savage sentence. Justice Davar came to know about this, and he sent for Jinnah in his chambers. Davar asked Jinnah whether he had any grievance against him. Jinnah said he had none. Davar then asked: “Why did you write a note like this against me?” Jinnah replied that he wrote it because he thought that it was the truth, and however well Davar might have treated him he could not suppress his strong feeling about the manner in which he had treated Tilak’s case. This goes to demonstrate the great regard, which Jinnah had for Tilak, and also the courage and the spirit of nationalism, which Jinnah displayed as a young man.
(Roses in December by M.C.Chagla, pg 14-15)

Imperial Legislative Council: Jinnah, at the age of thirty-five was elected by the Muslims of the Bombay Presidency to the Imperial Legislative Council as their representative. In his very

69

first speech in the council meeting held at Calcutta on 25th February 1910, Jinnah lent support to Mahatma Gandhi’s activities in South Africa. In his speech, Jinnah said: “…It is a most painful question-a question, which has roused the feelings of all classes in this country to the highest pitch of indignation and horror at the harsh and cruel treatment that is meted out to Indians in South Africa.” Lord Minto, who was presiding over the council meeting reprimanded Jinnah for using the words, “cruel treatment,” as he considered them too harsh to be used for a friendly part of the Empire.” “My Lord,” Jinnah retorted, “I should feel much inclined to use much stronger language. But I am fully aware of the constitution of this council, and I do not wish to trespass for one single moment. But I do say that the treatment meted out to Indians is the harshest and the feeling in this country is unanimous.” Up to this date, no one had shown such a courage right on the face of the Viceroy. As a result Jinnah’s speech received wide publicity in the press all over India and it was recognized that a forceful voice has entered the council. Jinnah, invariably lent his willing support to every liberal measure involving the larger national issues like Gokhale’s Elementary Education Bill, and Mr. Basu’s Special Marriage Bill, to which conservative India as a whole was so violently opposed. His original work, however, was in the introduction of Wakf Validating Bill on 17th March 1911. His admirable skill and tact in piloting through such an intricate and controversial measure won him not only the appreciation of his

70

collegues but also his first meed of general recognition from his co-religionists all over India, who while still regarding him a little outside the orthodox pale of Islam were soon to seek his advice and guidance in their political affairs. Speaking on the financial aspect of Gokhale’s Education Bill, Jinnah said: “If you have money, you will get teachers; if you have money, you will get school building. The real point is whether, you have got the money or not… Now Sir, this is a very, very old story that you have no money, and all that I can say is this- Find money! Find money! Find money! “I ask is it such an insurmountable difficulty to get three crores of rupees from the Imperial Exchaquer? Is it such a great, gigantic feat to be found for a country like India, with its three hundred million people? I say Sir, that there is nothing in the argument. I ask the Government, I say, find the money-if necessary, tax the people… You must remove the reproach that is justly leveled against British rule, namely, the neglect of elementary education… It is the duty of every civilized Government to educate masses,” Jinnah attended the annual meeting of the Congress as well as the Council meeting of the Muslim League both held in December 1912 at Bankipur. Jinnah had not as yet formally joined the League, but he was permitted to support the resolution that expanded the League’s goals to include, the attainment of a system of self-government suitable to India, to be brought about through constitutional means, a steady reform of the existing system of administration; by prompting national unity and fostering public spirit among the people and by

71

cooperating purposes.

with

other

communities

for

the

said

In April 1913, Gokhale and Jinnah sailed together from Bombay for Liverpool to meet Lord Islington, Under Secretary of State for India and Chairman of their Royal Public Service Commission. Gokhale was then almost forty-seven years old; Jinnah was thirty-six. A Public meeting was held on 28th June 1913, at the Caxton Hall, Westminster to discuss a scheme for the establishment of a Central Association and that in London for Indian students. Mr.H.N. Lall presided. The following resolution was moved: “This meeting of the Indian students in the United Kingdom resolves that a central association be formed with the following aims and objects: 1. To maintain and foster unity, and to strengthen and encourage friendship between the Indian students in the United Kingdom by providing various opportunities for social intercourse and interchange of thought and ideas by holding (a) debates and discussions on various subjects of interest, (b) social gatherings, (c) by acquiring a club-house. 2. Provided that this association does not take any part in actual and administrative politics. Its aim was to remove restrictions imposed upon Indians wishing to enter the Universities and Inns of Court; also to acquire a central club-house in which the students could meet, for debates and social functions. Speaking on the resolution, Jinnah said: “…The caste system-a system which; admirable though it might have been when initiated, was now responsible for the backwardness of their country. In England they had set up a dozen such societies, but they lack one thing-a

72

central organization where they could meet together and form friendship. “The position of the Indian students in this country was one without a parallel. They came to England when between the ages of 18 and 23; they were totally separated from their relatives and friends; they were away from the influence of their elders; they had no one to guide them. The Indian student class was typically representative of the best the country could produce, and their action and conduct were inflicted upon their country at home. They were, so to speak, the custodians of the reputation of India. Unfortunately just now, so far as the British public was concerned, they had not a good name. Instead of conducting themselves merely as students and learning all they could of the civilization, which the British people had taken centuries to build up they had been tempted to use strong language and take strong action in political questions….To take part in politics would simply be to injure their position as students. “By communion with one another, by the exchange of ideas, they would come better to understand one another; they would get broader view, they would widen their outlook, and fit themselves for the more responsible duties which would fall on them when they returned home. Today in India the men who were taking the most active part in politics were men who were educated in England and had returned home to serve their country. The students of yesterday were the active politicians of today.” Concluding his speech, Jinnah said: “Students must observe a high code of honour and morality; they

73

should abandon strong language and hysterical ideas, become earnest workers and serious thinkers, and then they could hope to go back home as great missionaries in the cause of progress.” On the eve of his departure for India, in the autumn of 1913, at the express desire of his two friends namely Maulana Mohmod Ali-Pan-Islamic scholar and Editor of ‘Comrade.’ And Syed Wazir Hassan, Secretary of the Muslim League then in England, Jinnah formally enrolled himself as a member of the All India Muslim League. However, his two friends were required to make a solemn preliminary covenant that loyalty to the Muslim League and the Muslim interest would in no way and at no time imply even the shadow of disloyalty to the larger national cause to which his life was dedicated.
(Mohmod Ali Jinnah: Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim Unity by Sarojini Naidu, pg 11)

Gokhale

and

Jinnah

returned

to

India

in

September 1913 and in December they went to attend the Karachi session of the Congress. In this session, Jinnah moved the following resolution: “That this Congress is of the opinion that the Council of the Secretary of State for India, as at present constituted, (a) (b) should be abolished, and makes the following suggestions for its construction”: That the salary for the Secretary of State should be placed on the English estimates. That with a view to the efficiency and independence of the Council it is expedient that it should be partly nominated and partly elected.

74

(c) (d)

That the total number of members of the Council should not be less than nine. That the elected portion of the Council should consist of not less than one-third of the total number of members, who should be non-official Indians chosen of the by a constituency Councils. consisting elected

members of the Imperial and Provincial (e) That not less than 0ne-half of the

nominated portion of the Council should consist of public men of merit and ability unconnected with Indian administration. (f) That the remaining Council portion of the of nominated should consist

officials who have served in India for not less than ten years and have not been away from India for more than two years. (g) (h) That the character of the Council should be advisory and not administrative. That the term of office of each member should be five years. The resolution was unanimously adopted Jinnah made the All India Muslim League pass the following resolution in 1913 itself: “The All India Muslim League places on record its firm belief that the future developments and the progress of the people of India depended on the harmonious working and co-operation of the various communities and hopes that leaders of both sides will periodically meet together to find a modus operandi for joint and concerted action in question.”

75

(Jinnah & Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 23)

In the Karachi session of the congress, Bhupendra Nath Basu moved a resolution thanking the Muslim League for their above resolution. It was also decided on the inspiration of Jinnah that both the Congress and the League should hold their annual sessions at Bombay in 1915. Jinnah’s position was now unique: he was a member of the Imperial Legislative Council, a member of the Congress and of the Muslim League, to whose expanded outlook, he had contributed so signally by his example. From Karachi, Jinnah went to Agra, where the Muslim League met on 3oth and 31st December 1913. At the Agra session, Jinnah made an appeal to the Muslim League to postpone reaffirmation of faith in the principle of communal representation for another year, urging his coreligionists that such special representation would only divide India into two watertight compartments. The Muslim League, however, rejected Jinnah’s appeal to them, considering the separate electorate formula absolutely necessary to the League’s immediate future. In May 1914, Jinnah led a delegation to England, to lay before the Secretary of State the views of the Congress on the Council of India Bill, due for its first reading in the House of Lords on May 25th. He repeated and explained its terms to the members of both the Houses of Parliament, at a breakfast-party given by Sir William Wedderburn at the Westminster Palace Hotel. The Bill was postponed after its second reading. Reacting

76

to the postponement of the Bill, Jinnah wrote in the ‘Times’: “India is perhaps the only member of the British Empire without any real representation, and the only civilized country in the world that has no system of representative Government.” Jinnah returned to India, empty-handed; and the reforms he advocated had to wait. His compensation for failure were personal: he had been listened to by officials in Westminster, for the first time; he had been described by Sir William Wedderburn as one of the gentlemen of recognized position in the public life of India.
(Jinnah: Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 61)

Sarojini Naidu remarked that: “It was no small compliment to Jinnah’s social as well as mental qualities that he was chosen to be the spokesman of articulate India before the British Parliament and the British Public. The leading English Journals published numerous interviews and his concise and lucid statement of the Indian case, which appeared in the ‘London Times,’ attracted wide spread attention and comment.” The tragic death of Gopal Krishna Gokhale in February 1915 brought Hindus and Muslims close together in a bond of common loss and sorrow. It was keenly felt that the time was now ripe for a more direct and definite rapprochement between the two great communities that had so recently exchanged such cordial expressions of goodwill and fellowship from afar. The Indian National Congress was to hold its session that year in Bombay. Jinnah supported at that time by all the leading local Muslims, sent an invitation to the All India Muslim League to hold its next annual session in Bombay in December. About the situation

77

prevailing then, Sarojini Naidu said: “…That in an hour of such grave and bitter crisis, calculated to shatter the master-dream invincible of Indian nationalism With a proud this and dauntless splendid soldier (Jinnah) of unity rose to the heights of an patriotism. indifference, to all personal suffering and sacrifice heedless alike of all official dissuasion or disfavour, the aggressive malice and machinations of his opponents or even the temporary injustice of distant friends, Mohomed Ali Jinnah strove with an incomparable devotion and courage to create that supreme moment in our national history which witnessed a birth of a new India, redeemed and victorious in the love of her united children.” The December 1915 sessions of Congress and the Muslim League were the first held within walking distance of one another, facilitating attendance at both by members interested in fostering Hindu-Muslim unity and hammering out a single nationalist platform. The President-elect of the Congress was Lord S.P.Sinha, and that of the League was Mr. Mazahar-ulHaque. There was so much communal cordiality at these sessions of the Congress and the League that Maulana Mahammad Ali humerously wrote: “So rapid has been the progress of the Musalmans that a critic from among their own community observed that Lord Sinha had traveled by the same train as his Bihari neighbour and brother lawyer who presided over the Muslim League, and the two had borrowed one another’s presidential addresses in order to compare notes. But the two presidents forgot to take back their own productions, and by an irony of fate Maulana Mazhar-ul-Haque had read to his Muslim audience as his own the pungent oration

78

characteristic of the Bengalee, and Lord Sinha had done likewise and read to the Congress delegates the cautious and halting address of the ever loyal Muslim.”
(Jinnah by M.H.Saiyid, pg 120)

While matters

reiterating

Congress’s he had

general found called

major

demands for reform, Sinha focused on three specific concerning of which practical for army unanimity opinion. The first

commissions for qualified Indians and military training for the people, the second for extension of local selfgovernment, and the third for development of commerce and industries including agriculture. Mazhar-ul-Haque argued: “It is said that our object in holding the League contemporaneously with the Congress in the same city is to deal a blow at the independence of the League, and to merge its individuality with that of the Congress. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Communities like individuals’ love and cherish their individuality. When unity is evolved out of diversity, then there is a real and abiding national progress.” A number of members vehemently opposed the rapprochement. Jinnah appealed to them saying: “We are bound by our constitution. Reverence for and obedience to that constitution, and discipline, are absolutely necessary qualities to enable us to say that we are fit for real political franchise, freedom and self-government. At this juncture, we are watched not only by India, but by the whole of the British Empire, of which we aspire to be an independent, free and equal member. He asked, “Can we not bury our differences-show a united front? It will make our Hindu friends value us all the more and will

79

make them feel, more than ever, that we are worthy of standing shoulder to shoulder with them.” However, his appeal went on deaf ears and the meeting was required to be adjourned and convened on 1st January 1916 in Bombay’s Taj Mahal Hotel. On a call from Haque, Jinnah moved a resolution to appoint a committee to formulate and frame a scheme for reforms in consultation with other political organizations, which would allow them to demand a single platform of reforms in the name of United India. The resolution was adopted and a committee of seventy-five leaders of the Muslim League was constituted under the Chairmanship of Raja of Mahmudabad. Jinnah among others was a prominent member of this committee. Before closing the meeting, President Haque said that the entire Muslim community of India owed a deep debt of gratitude to Jinnah, for without his exertions they could not have met in Bombay. In a unique tribute, the president then turned to Jinnah, saying: “Mr. Jinnah, we the Musalmans of India thank you.” It was the first such tribute, Jinnah received from the Muslim League. Bombay Provincial Conference-1916: Bombay Provincial Conference was held in Ahemdabad in October 1916 under the Presidentship of Mohd Ali Jinnah. This was the sixteenth conference and the first after Surat split. In his address, Jinnah at the outset said that India no longer wishes to continue as the subject race, or to put it in the words of Lord Hardinge, “the trusty dependent,” but claims to be an equal partner with the other members of the Empire. After dealing with several important issues, Jinnah came to the all absorbing question which had stirred India because of

80

the declaration of the “Entente Cordiale” between Hindus and Muslims made in the city of Bombay last Christmas and said: “I believe all thinking men are thoroughly convinced that the key-note of our real progress lies in the goodwill, concord, harmony and cooperation between the two great sister communities. The true focus of progress is centered in their union and remember that this is a matter which is entirely in our hands. “Political future of the country depends on the harmonious working and cooperation of the various communities in the country which has been the cherished ideal of the Congress. This conference most heartily welcomes the hope expressed by the League that the leaders of the different communities will make every endeavour to find a modus operandi for joint and concerted action on all questions of national good and earnestly appeals to all the sections of the people to help the object which we all have at heart.” Inviting attention to the question of separate electorates, Jinnah said: “The demand for separate electorates is not a matter of policy but a matter of necessity to the Mohamedans, who require to be aroused from the coma and torpor into which they had fallen so long. I would therefore appeal to my Hindu Brethren that in the present state of position they should try to win the confidence and trust of the Mohamedans who are, after all, in the minority in the country. If they are determined to have separate electorates, no resistance should be shown to their demand… It is not a question of a few more seats going to the Mohamedans or Hindus. It is a question of transfer of power from the bureaucracy to

81

democracy. The Hindus and Mohamedans should stand united and use every constitutional and legitimate means to effect transfer as soon as possible. But for the real new India to arise, all petty and small things must be given up.” In conclusion Jinnah told his audience: “Hindus and Mahomedans united and firm, the voice of the three hundred millions of people vibrating throughout the length and breadth of the country, will produce a force which no power on earth can resist… We are on a straight road; the promised land is within sight. “Forward” is the motto and clear course for Young India. But in the onward march, we must be circumspect, and never lose sight of the true perspective before us. And Wisdom and Caution should be our watch-words.” Lucknow Pact: The Indian National Congress and the All India Muslim League held their sessions in December 1916 at Lucknow. In pursuance of the resolution adopted in Bombay session of the League and the Congress, the Reform Committee met at Lucknow on 21st August 1916 to consider a tentative scheme of reforms. Earlier discussions were held at Allahabad from 22nd to 24th April 1916 at the residence of Pandit Motilal Nehru. Motilal Nehru introduced Jinnah, “as unlike most Muslims, is keen a nationalist as any of us…He is showing his community the way to Hindu-Muslim unity.” The proposals were then considered at a joint meeting of the All India Congress Committee and the Council of the Muslim League held in October and November 1916 at Calcutta.

82

The

scheme

recommended

by

the

Reform

Committee was then presented to the All India Congress Committee in December 1916 at Lucknow with the following speech from Surendra Nath Banerjee, who had chaired the Committee: “I had the honour of presiding over the deliberations of the Conference and I will say this, on behalf of the representatives of the Congress and the Muslim League, that throughout they exhibited a spirit of compromise, of sweet reasonableness, which, to my mind, constitutes the most valuable qualification for self Government. The spirit of compromise was conspicuous in our deliberations. The scheme is before you, and it is a crowning testimony to the growing unity of feeling between Hindus and Muslims. Today the leaders of the Mohamedan community have joined the Congress. Three cheers for them. They have received us with open arm…” Congress President announced: “The Hindus and Muslims have agreed to make a united demand for selfGovernment. The All-India Congress Committee and the representatives of the Muslim League have in one voice resolved to make a joint demand for a representative Government in India.” Jinnah in his presidential address to the Muslim League said: “Our joint Conferences in Lucknow were marked by honest efforts on either side to find a lasting solution of our differences, and I rejoice to think that a final settlement has at last been reached which sets the seal on Hindu-Muslim co-operation and opens a new era in the history of our country. A few irreconcilable spirits in either camp may still exist here and there, but the atmosphere has on the whole been rid of the menace of

83

sectarian thunder and the prospects of the future are bright with a promise that gladdens, the hearts of India’s devoted sons.” Concluding his address, Jinnah said: “Towards the Hindus our attitude should be of good-will and brotherly feelings. Cooperation in the cause of our Motherland should be our guiding principle. India’s real progress can only be achieved by a true understanding and harmonious relations between the two great sister communities… We should remove the root causes and the evil effects of the process of disintegration. We should maintain a sustained loyalty to and cooperation with each other. We should sink personal differences and subordinate personal ambitions to the well-being of the community. We must recognize that no useful purpose is served in petty disputes and in forming party combinations. We must show by our words and deeds that we sincerely and earnestly desire a healthy national unity. For, the rest of seventy millions of Musalmans need not fear.” Jinnah ultimately said: “The Renaissance of India really lies in our own hands. Let us work and trust to God so that we may leave a richer heritage to our children than all the gold of the world, viz. Freedom for which no sacrifice is too great.” The “Lucknow sessions of the Indian National Congress and the Muslim League ended with the Congress-League Agreement, which came to be known as, “Lucknow Pact.” M.R.Jayakar described the hopeful atmosphere it created as follows: “The achievement of the Lucknow Pact was a memorable event. It showed that the Hindus and

84

Muslims could unite to make a common political demand on the British Government. Vital concessions were made to Muslim sentiments. Confining our attention to the three main demands of the Muslims, viz., separate electorates, extent of Muslim representations and safeguards, the Pact conceded that adequate provision should be made for the representation of important minorities by election and Muslims should be represented through special electorates.” Pandit Jagatnarayan said: “The joint conference of the Congress and the League marked a great step forward in our political evolution and disclosed a substantial Muslims.” Tilak, Jinnah and Annie Besant emerged as architects of the “Lucknow Pact.” It was a matter of surprise to many that Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak himself played a prominent role in bringing about the Pact between the Hindus and Muslims. Once again in December 1917, when the sessions of the All India Muslim League and the Indian National Congress were held in Calcutta, Jinnah played a unique role of the Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity by supporting the resolution on the Congress-League scheme and self-Government in both the organizations as a member of both. In his speech, Jinnah said: “It is said that we are going on at a tremendous speed, that we are a minority and that it might afterwards become a Hindu Government. I want to give an answer to that. I particularly wish to address my Muslim friends on this point. Do you think, in the first instance, as to whether it is possible that this country identity of views between Hindus and

85

could become a Hindu Government? Do you think that the Government could be conducted by ballot boxes? Do you think that because the Hindus are in majority, therefore, they would carry on measure in the Legislative Assembly and there is end of it? If seventy millions of Muslims do not approve of a measure, which is carried by a ballot box, do you think that it could be enforced and administered in this country? Do you think that the Hindu statesmen, with their intellect, with their past history, would ever think of-when they get selfGovernment-enforcing a measure by ballot box? Then what is there to fear? This is a boggy, which is put before you by your enemies to frighten you, to scare you away, from the co-operation with Hindus, which is essential for the establishment of self-Government. If this country is not to be governed by the Hindus, let me tell you in the same spirit, it was not to be governed by the Muslims either and certainly not by the English. It is to be governed by the people and the sons of this country and I stand here-I believe that I am voicing the feelings of the whole of India-say that what we demand is the immediate transfer of the substantial power of Government of this country and that is the principle demand of our scheme of reforms…” The Congress, which was holding its session in the same city reciprocated in full the sentiments expressed by the Muslim League. Babu Ambica Charan Mazumdar, the president of the Congress remarked: “The Congress and the League have come to meet at the same place and the day may not be far distant when, in spite of the siren song, which so far diverted their course, they will come to meet in the same pavilion

86

and at the same time.” He further said: “The stock argument based upon occasional differences and disturbances between Hindus and Musalmans cannot have much force. These are confined to mostly lower classes of people on either side.” Recommendations of joint conference of the Congress and the League were adopted in the form of joint scheme for reforms, and were submitted to the Government. Events of those days showed that the League and the Congress though different in body were one in soul. A joint meeting of the Council of the All India Muslim League and All India Congress Committee was held in Bombay on 27th and 28th July 1917. It decided to send a deputation to London consisting of the members of the Congress and the League. It also resolved that a petition be submitted to the Parliament in support of the scheme of Reforms adopted by the Congress and the Muslim League. Rowlett Bills: As a sequel to the recommendations of the Rowlett Committee, two Bills were introduced in the Imperial Legislative Council in early 1919. One of the Bills was a temporary measure intended to deal with the situation arising from the expiry of the Defence of India Act. The second Bill was intended to introduce permanent changes in the ordinary criminal law of the land. Both the Bills brought countrywide agitation. Gandhi issued a statement from Sabarmati Ashram in which he said: “The Bills are unjust, subversive of principles of liberty and justice, and destructive of the elementary rights of individuals on which the safety of the community, as a

87

whole and the State itself is based.” Gandhi further said: “In the event of these Bills becoming law and until they are withdrawn, we shall refuse to obey these laws and launch Satyagraha-Civil Disobedience Movement.” When the Bill was tabled on 6th February 1919, Jinnah warned: “… To substitute the Executive for the Judicial will lead to the abuse of these vast powers… There was no precedent or parallel in the legal history of any civilized country to the enactment of such laws. … This was the most inopportune moment for this legislation as high hopes about momentous reforms had been raised…If these measures were passed they will create unprecedented discontent, agitation and will have the most disastrous effect upon the relations between the Government and the people. Jinnah’s warning fell on deaf ears. Despite the unanimous opposition of all 22 Indian members on the Council, the Bill was passed into law in March 1919. Jinnah wrote to Chelmsford: “By passing this Bill Your Excellency’s Government have actively negatived every argument they advanced but a year ago when they appealed to India for help at the War Conference and have ruthlessly trampled upon the principles for which Great Britain avowedly fought the war. The fundamental principles of justice have been uprooted and the constitutional rights of the people have been violated at a time when there is no real danger to the State, by an over-fretfull and incompetent bureaucracy which is neither responsible to the people nor in touch with real public opinion. I, therefore, as a protest against the passing of the Bill and the manner in which it was passed tender my resignation. For, I feel that under the

88

prevailing conditions I can be of no use to my people in the Council nor consistently with one’s self-respect is cooperation possible with a Government that shows such utter disregard for the opinion of the representatives of the people in the Council Chamber, and for the feelings and the sentiments of the people outside. In my opinion, Government that passes or sanctions such a law in times of peace forfeits its claim to be called a civilized Government and I still hope that the Secretary of State for India, Mr. Montagu, will advise His Majesty to signify his disallowance to this Black Act.
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 61, 62)

Gandhi fixed 6th of April as the day of All India Hartal-Strike. Public response was overwhelming, but it did not remain non-violent at all places. Government replied with bullets. General Michael O’ Dyer ordered to open fire on the people who had gathered in Jalianwala Bagh. About 500 persons were killed and over a thousand were wounded. The wounded were left to suffer through out the night without water to drink, without medical attendance or without aid of any character. General Dyer in his evidence before the Hunter Commission appointed by the Government to enquire into the massacre, said that he deliberately acted in the way he did to create a moral effect from a military point of view, not only on those who were present, but more specially through out Punjab. Government held Gandhi and his SatyagrahPassive Resistance directly responsible for all disturbances and mishaps and gave a stern warning to him to withdraw his movement.

89

Gandhi declared to suspend the Satyagrah and proclaimed three days fast and also made an appeal to people to undergo a similar fast for a day. Royal Proclamation: Towards the end of the year, the annual session of the Indian National Congress was held at Amritsar with Pandit Motilal Nehru as its president. Two days before the commencement of the session, a Royal Proclamation was issued on 24th December 1919, announcing new Reforms, known as Montagu-Chelmsford Reforms. In the Amritsar session of the Congress, Gandhi moved a resolution in which he said: “…On the question of the propriety of obstruction I say that Indian culture demands that we shall trust the man who extends the hand of fellowship. The King Emperor has extended the hand of fellowship and if he has done so we do not reject the advance. Tell Mr. Montagu and all the officials of the bureaucracy, we are going to trust you…” While seconding the resolution, Jinnah said: “...I ask you, do you object to work the Reforms so as to make the establishment of full responsible Government as early as possible? (Cries of No, No) Then why not say so? I, therefore, say that Mahatma Gandhi does not propose to do anything more than what this house has expressed over and over again –that we must work the Reforms Act.” It is to be particularly noted that, along with the Congress, the Muslim League, the Khilafat and the Jamait-ul-ulema held their sessions simultaneously in Amritsar. The resolution passed by the Muslim League was on the lines adopted by the Congress.
(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Mazumdar, pg 48,49)

90

Non-Cooperation Program: Non-cooperation Program of Gandhi was started on 1
st

August

1920.

While Gandhi

presenting said: “The

the

nonof

cooperation

program,

days

deputations and memorials were over. We must withdraw all support from the Government and this alone would persuade the Government to come to the terms. He suggested that all Government titles should be returned, law courts and educational institutions should be boycotted, Indians should resign from the services and refuse to take any part in the newly constituted legislatures.”
(India Wins Freedom by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, pg 10)

In September 1920, All India Muslim League and Indian National Congress both met at Calcutta in special sessions under the presidentship of Jinnah and Lala Lajpat Rai respectively. Jinnah in his address said: “…One thing there is which is indisputable, and that is that this Government must go and give place to a completely responsible Government. Meetings of the Congress and the Muslim League will not effect this. We shall have to think out some course more effective than passing resolutions of disapproval to be forwarded to the Secretary of State for India. And we shall surely find a way, even as France and Italy did-and the new-born Egypt has. We are not going to rest content until we have attained the fullest political freedom in our own country.” Jinnha further said: “ Mr. Gandhi has placed his program of non-cooperation, supported by Khilafat Conference before the country. The operations of this program will strike at the individual in each of you, and

91

therefore, it rests with you alone to measure your strength and to weigh the pros and cons of the question before you arrive at decision. But once you have decided to march, let there be no retreat under any circumstances.”
(Mohammad Ali Jinnah by Matlabul Hasan Saiyid, pg 258 and Muslim India by Mohammad Noman, pg 215-216)

Towards the close of the year 1921, a bid was made by the Government to enlist the cooperation of those who had been out of the non-cooperation movement. Jinnah issued a statement to the press in which he said: “The non-cooperation movement is only a symptom and expression of general dissatisfaction, owing to the utter disregard of public opinion and of an outstanding grievances. Every country has got

extreme section of opinion but it will be impossible for that section to make any headway if the bulk of the people are satisfied. And my reading of the Indian situation is that, leave alone the bulk of the people, even intellectual and reasonable section is far from satisfied with the present policy of the Government.” Soon after Nagpur session, as a result of the agitation started by Gandhi, Titles were renounced by a few. Attempts were made to close down schools and colleges. Law Courts were boycotted at some places. Some lawyers gave up their practice. A number of graduates tore up their degrees. Government servants resigned their posts. Mob fury came into vogue. The arrest of Ali Brothers at Karachi added fuel to the fire. The communal riots became order of the day. All Parties Conference was convened in the middle of January 1922 at Bombay, with Sir M.Visesvaryya as

92

the Chairman and Jinnah, Jayakar and Natrajan as Secretaries. This conference condemned the Government policy of repression, and advised the Congress to abandon the resolution passed at Bardoli, which contemplated the inauguration of Civil Disobedience. It also recommended to the Government to convene a Round Table Conference. Gandhi, however, considered the idea of a Round Table Conference for devising a scheme of full Swaraj premature. He argued that India has not yet proved her strength. Two weeks later, however, the fatal immolation of 22 Indian Police-men in the Chuari Chaura police station by a mob convinced Gandhi that Indians were not yet ready for a non-violent movement. Early in February of 1922, he suspended the movement and said: “God has been abundantly kind to me. He has warned me the third time that there is not as yet in India that truthful and non-violent atmosphere which and which alone can justify mass disobedience which can be at all described as civil, which means gentle, truthful, humble knowing, willful yet loving, never criminal and hateful…God spoke clearly through Chauri Chaura.” The year 1923 was the blackest as regards riot, because of the Tanzeem, Tableegh, Sanghtan and Shuddhi movements in operation. Gandhi appealed to Hindus and Muslims to maintain communal harmony. A Hindu conference was held in Delhi. At the same time, Muslim League met in Lahore under the presidentship of Jinnah, who in his address said: “There is a fearless and persistent demand that the steps must be taken for immediate establishment of Dominion Responsible Government in India. The ordinary man in the street has

93

found his political consciousness and realized that selfrespect and honor of the country demand that the Government of the country should not be in the hands of any one else except the people of the country... We must not forget that one essential requisite condition to achieve SWARAJ is the political unity between the Hindus and Muslims, for, the advent of foreign rule and its continuation in India is primarily due to the fact that the people of India, particularly Hindus and Muslims are not united and do not sufficiently trust each other. The domination of the bureaucracy will continue so long as Hindus and Muslims do not come to a settlement… India will get Dominion Responsible Government, the day Hindus and Muslims are united. Swaraj is almost interchangeable term with Hindu-Muslim unity. If we wish to be free people, let us unite, but if we wish to continue slaves of bureaucracy, let us fight amongst ourselves and gratify petty vanity over petty matters, Englishmen being our arbiters.” Gandhi just released commented: “I agree with Mr. Jinnah that Hindu-Muslim unity means Swaraj.” In November 1923, Jinnah was elected to the Central Legislative Council unopposed. His plea, before the election, was moderate. He said: “I have no desire to seek any post or position or title from the Government. My sole object is to serve the cause of the country as best as I can.
(Jinnah: Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 88)

On the eve of the special session of the Muslim League held at Lahore in May 1924, Jinnah issued a statement in which he said: “The object of holding the

94

session is to concentrate the united Muslim Opinion with regard to: 1. The question of the amendment in the of the in constitution of India. 2. To bring about a friendly understanding Punjab particular, where owing to certain causes, which seem insignificant, a great deal of misunderstanding has been created between Hindus and Mohamedans; and 3. To bring about, in due course, through and by means of the All India Muslim League organization once more a complete settlement between Hindus and Muslims as was done in 1916. Jinnah in his statement further said: “The League is not in any way going to adopt a policy or program which will, in the least degree as far as I can judge, be antagonistic to the Indian National Congress. On the contrary, I believe it will proceed on lines which are best calculated to further general national interests, not forgetting the particular interests of the Muslim community.” Jinnah in his presidential address emphasized that, “One essential requisite condition to achieve Swaraj is the political unity between Hindus and Muslims. I am almost inclined to say that India will get Dominion Responsible Government, the day the Hindus and Muslims are united.” He further declared that the main task before he League was to see that an atmosphere of fraternity is created in the country between various elements in order that a joint scheme of constitution is once again formulated as it was done in 1916 at Lucknow.

95

(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 107)

The League also appointed a special committee headed by Jinnah to frame a scheme for a constitution for the Government of India. The League further resolved to cooperate in establishing conciliatory boards on which members of all communities could meet regularly to resolve communal differences and try to alleviate causes of conflict. A resolution was also moved deploring the scandalous state of disorganization existing among Muslims in all spheres of life, which not only prevents all healthy interchange of ideas and cooperation for the good of the community, but also seriously handicaps the Muslims in shouldering their proper share of responsibility in the national struggle for progress and self-Government.
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 83)

The above course of action of Jinanh shows that he was in a conciliatory mood and was anxious for a complete settlement between Hindus and Muslims as was done in 1916. But, unfortunately, Mr. Mohammad Ali did a very imprudent thing. He issued a statement to the press in which he ridiculed the League and its new leader. Jinnah was deeply hurt but did not lose his balance. In reply, he issued an appeal to the Hindus to consider his proposal on its merits. He concluded his appeal in the following words: “In conclusion, I would appeal to my Hindu friends not to be carried away by the antics of Mohammad Ali. I am not, as is well known, one of those who are enamoured of separate electorates and separate representation. But the Muslim opinion is so strong on this question that we might take it as a settled fact for

96

the time being. On that basis the Muslims should have an adequate and effective representation, wherever they are in minority. The percentage, the ratio on the population can only be fixed by mutual good will and consent, in order to secure success of any scheme that may come in force for representation of the Municipalities and the Legislatures. I, therefore, hope that the Hindus will not misunderstand me, as I still stand as a tried nationalist and if the Muslims are ought to be organized it is not with a view to prejudicing national advance, or national interest, but on the contrary, to bring them into line with the rest of India.”
(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 108)

All Parties Conference was convened at Bombay in November 1924. Jinnah made it clear that he has not come to the conference to say what the Musalmans wanted, but he was there to sit with the Hindus as a coworker and he appealed to all to put their heads together not as Hindus or Muslims but as Indians. He further appealed that the dispute between the Hindus and the Muslims was a question, which had been a terrible monster in the way of country’s progress. It was not for the Hindus or Muslims alone to ask what they wanted, it was up to every one to try and find a solution to the question. Without removing this terrible obstacle, they could not make any progress in any direction.” Concluding his speech, Jinnah said: “We have come in a spirit of meeting you as friends, and as responsible men who occupy eminent and representative position in their respective communities, let us put our heads together.”

97

On the floor of the Central Assembly in 1925, Jinnah said: “I am a nationalist first, a nationalist second and a nationalist last.”
(Eight Lives by Rajmohan Gandhi, pg 138)

Jinnah was again elected to the Central Legislative Assembly in November 1926. In March 1927, at Delhi, Jinnah and other Muslim leaders set down their proposals for representation in the various Legislatures in any future scheme of constitution. Their good faith towards Hindus was shown by their willingness to give to Hindu minorities in the predominantly Muslim provinces, the same concessions that Hindu majorities in other provinces are prepared to make to the Muslim minorities. In May, there was a hope that Jinnah might have his way, when the Committee of Congress agreed to his proposals for Muslim representation. But these local affairs were overshadowed, in November 1927, by an announcement of Simon Commission.
(Jinnah: Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 90)

Simon Commission: In November 1927, His Majesty’s Government announced the appointment of Simon Commission consisting of all the seven English members to suggest reforms to be given to India. The exclusion of Indians from the membership of the Commission was widely resented in the country. No important section of the Indian opinion was prepared to cooperate with the Commission, who were derisively described as the Simon Seven. Even leaders of moderate opinion like Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru, Sir Chimanlal Setalvad, and Jinnah declined to do anything with them. Jayakar, who met the Viceroy on 5th November 1927, told him frankly that it

98

was

impossible

for

him

to

co-operate

with

the

Commission except on honourable terms. Speaking in the Legislative Assembly on 16th February 1928, Jayakar said: “…I say that the door is left open even now. The Government must not imagine that the door will be kept open for long. What is possible today will not be possible tomorrow… We reject the statement of John Simon because it is not a bona fide statement.” On 18th February, the Legislative Assembly passed a resolution amidst scenes of great excitement, placing on record its, entire lack of confidence in the foreign investigators. Supporting the Congress resolution to ignore the Commission, Dr. Annie Besant declaed: “Let us say: ‘you have said that no Indian shall sit on the Commission. We say: Let no Englishman judge India’s fitness. Our honour is our own.’” Speaking in the Legislative Assembly on 16th February 1928, Lala Lajpat Rai said that he had no faith in the bona fides of those who had appointed the Commission. It was a foreign body, which had come to India to function as both jury and judge. Attacking the British Government’s policy, he said: “I say the Government and the Anglo-Indian mercantile community have absolutely no intention to leave us.”
(M.R.Jayakar by V.B.Kulkarni, pg 171-172)

The Muslim League, was however, divided over the Simon Commission issue. A small group mostly from the Punjab, lined up behind ex-Law Minister Shafi met in Lahore, where they voted to welcome and cooperate with the Commission. Most members of the League’s council, however, joined the ‘Jinnah Group,’ in Calcutta on December 30, 1927, and New Year’s Day, 1928. Annie Besant and Sarojini Naidu attended as honoured guests

99

and the Aga Khan was to have presided, but he withdrew at the last moment. Maulvi Mohamad Yakub took his place and delivered his presidential address extempore in Urdu. The most important resolution, carried by acclamation, declared emphatically that the Statutory Commission and the procedure, as announced, are unacceptable to the people of India. It (the Jinnah League) therefore, resolves that the Musalmans through out the country should have nothing to do with the Simon Commission at any stage or in any form. Jinnah was reelected permanent president of the League for another three years. He declared: “A constitutional war has been declared on Great Britain. Negotiations for a settlement are not to come from our side. Let the Government sue for peace. We are denied equal partnership. We will resist the new doctrine to the best of our power. Jalianwala Bagh was a physical butchery, the Simon Commission is a butchery of our souls. By appointing an exclusively white Commission, Lord Birkenhead has declared our unfitness for selfGovernment. I welcome Pandit Malviya and I welcome the hand of fellowship extended to us by Hindu leaders from the platform of the Congress and the Hindu Mahasabha. For, to me, this offer is more valuable than any concession, which the British Government can make. Let us then grasp the hand of fellowship. This is indeed a bright day; and for achieving this unity, thanks are due to Lord Birkenhead.
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 90)

Immediately after Calcutta, Jinnah returned to Bombay to organize the boycott of Simon Commission. He chaired the local boycott committee, and his assistant

100

Chagla, was its secretary. “I must say,” Chagla recalled, “Jinnah was as firm as a rock as far as the question of the boycott of the Simon Commission was concerned. Proposals were made that the boycott should be only political and not social. Jinnah would not agree and did not give an inch. He said boycott was a boycott, and it must be total and complete. Birkenhead had briefed Simon on the eve of his departure from London; he wrote to remind Viceroy Irwin the next day: “We have always relied on the nonboycotting Moslems; on the depressed community; on the business interests; and on many others, to break down the attitude of boycott. You and Simon must be the judges whether or not it is expedient in these directions to try to make a breach in the wall of antagonism.” Officialdom cracked down with a vengeance as the nationwide boycott proved more effective than Birkenhead dreamed it would be. Jinnah’s role in this boycott was underscored by Birkenhead’s singling him out as the leader to be undermined. “I should advice Simon to see at all stages important people who are not boycotting the Commission,” Birkenhead urged Irwin, “particularly

Moslems and depressed classes. I should widely advertise his interviews with representative Moslems.” He then announced, as put into writing by a British official, the “whole policy” of divide et impera, advising that Simon’s “obvious” goal was “to terrify the immense Hindu population by the apprehension that the Commission is being got hold of by the Moslem support, and leaving Jinnah high and dry.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 92-93)

101

(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 111)

In the All India National Convention held at Calcutta, three chief speakers were Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru, Mr. M.R.Jayakar and Mr. Jinnah representing three different points of view. Jinnah while expressing his views said: “…Hindus and Muslims should march together until our object is attained. Therefore, it is essential that you must get not only the Muslim League, but the Musalmans of India and here I am not speaking as a Musalman but as an Indian. And it is my desire to see that we get seven crores of Musalmans to march along with us in the struggle for freedom.” Jinnah then drew the attention of the Convention to the constitutional developments of Canada and Egypt. The minorities, he said, were always afraid of majorities. The majorities, particularly the religious majorities, were apt to be tyrannical and oppressive. The minorities, therefore, had a right to be absolutely secured. He further proceeded as follows: “These are big questions and they can be settled by the exercise of the highest order of statesmanship and political wisdom. I, therefore, ask you once more to consider this question most carefully before you decide. Please do not think that in anything that I have said I am threatening any party and I hope that I shall not be misunderstood: If you do not settle this question today, we shall have to settle it tomorrow, but in the meantime our national interests are bound to suffer. We are all sons of this land. We have to live together, we have to work together and whatever our differences may be, let us not, at any rate, create more bad blood. If we cannot

102

agree, let us at any rate agree to differ, but let us part as friends. Believe me that there is no progress for India until the Musalmans and Hindus are united, and let no logic, philosophy or squabble stand in the way of coming to a compromise and nothing will make me more happy than to see a Hindu-Muslim union.”
(Jinnah by M.H.Saiyid, pg 434-435)

This was a speech worthy of the Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim Unity. It was a superb effort on his part and he put his whole heart into it. But the speech was not well received by the Hindu and the Sikh sections of the audience. Following the line of argument of Mr. Jinnah, the Sikhs also made extreme demands, while the Hindu Mahasabha delegates refused to make any further concessions beyond what had already been conceded in the Nehru Report. He was also not well treated by a section of the Congress side of the audience who shouted that Jinnah represented only a section of Musalmans, who were communal-minded, and the undue importance should not be given to him. Jinnah returned from the meeting of the convention with a deep wound in his heart.
(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 112-113)

Jamshed Nusserwanjee, a friend of Jinnah said: “…Jinnah left Calcutta by train, and I went to see him off. He was standing at the door of his first-class coupe compartment, and he took my hand. He had tears in his eyes as he said, Jamshed, this is the parting of the ways.”

******

103

CREATOR OF PAKISTAN

Beginning of differences: Home Rule League: The Home Rule League was founded by Mrs Annie Besant on 3rd September 1916 with herself as President. Under her able leadership the Home Rule movement spread like wild fire. She issued a strong statement for Indian Home Rule at the Cuddalore Political Conference. Lord Pentland, who was then Governor of Madras sent for her and asked her to leave India. She refused. There upon in June 1917, she was interned under the orders of the Madras Government. Mrs Besant’s internment stirred the whole of India, the Hindus and the Muslims alike. Jinnah, out of sympathy for Besant joined the Home Rule League as its President with M.R.Jayakar as its Secretary. In his message as the President of the Home Rule League Jinnah said: “My message to the Musalmans is to join hands with your Hindu brethren. My message to the Hindus is to lift your backward brother up. In that spirit let the foundation of the Home Rule League be consecrated and there is nothing for us to fear.” In a crowded mass meeting held under the auspices of the Bombay Association on 30th July 1917, Jinnah spoke as follows:

104

“…We protest against the internment of Mrs. Besant and her co-workers not only on principle but also because it is an attempt to intern Home Rule or selfGovernment scheme framed and adopted co-jointly by the Indian National Congress and the All India Muslim League at Lucknow. We declare that we stand by that scheme unswervingly and unflinchingly, and we shall do all that lies in our power for its realization at the close of the war…” At this time Gandhi’s reputation as a public worker was at its peak. Jinnah in one of the meetings of the Home Rule League proposed Gandhi’s name to be its president. Jayakar as the Secretary of the Home Rule League was sceptic about the fitness of Gandhi to be its president and therefore, he wrote a letter to Gandhi in which he said: “It is not impossible that you will demand from us before long a change in our objects and aims, even try to secure in our creed a place for some of your pet theories, which many of us may be inclined to regard as fantastic fads.” Gandhi, in his reply to Jayakar said: “A great deal of what you say appeals to me, though I am disturbed by your description as ‘fads’ of some of my theories. May I tell you that the only ‘fad’ on which I would insist, if I ultimately decided to join your League, would be a common language for India, to be found in one of the vernaculars of the country and the gospel of Swadeshi. You need have no apprehension that any other theories of mine your League will be called upon to accept.”
(Story of My Life by M.R. Jayakar, Vol. I, pg 318)

Jayakar considered Gandhi’s assurance as enough to satisfy him and his collegues in the Home Rule League

105

and allowed Gandhi to join the Home Rule League and become its president. After assuming the Presidentship of the League, Gandhi called a general meeting of the members to change the name and creed of the League. He proposed to change the name of the Home Rule League to that of Swarajya Sabha. Jinnah and some other members opposed Gandhi’s proposal. But, Gandhi as Chairman of the meeting, overruled their objections and declared: “It was open to any member, be he a life member or otherwise, to resign his membership if he thought he could not remain a member of the Swarajya Sabha under its altered constitution.” In protest of Gandhi’s arbitrary action in changing the name and creed of the Home Rule League Jinnah, Jayakar, K.M.Munshi, Mangaldas Pakvasa, Jamnadas Dwarkadas, Gandhi Nagindas wrote to Master Jinnah and thirteen others him to resigned from the Home Rule League. requesting reconsider his resignation to take his share in the new life that opened up before the country, and benefit the country by his experience and guidance. Jinnah turned down Gandhi’s request through his letter in which he said: “I thank you for your kind suggestion offering me to take my share in the new life that has opened up before the country. If by new life you mean your methods and your program, I am afraid I cannot accept them; for I am fully convinced that it must lead to disaster. But the actual new life that has opened up before the country is that we are faced with a Government that pays no heed to the grievances, feelings and sentiments of the people;

106

that our own countrymen are divided; the Moderate Party is still going wrong; that your methods have already caused split and division in every institution that you have approached hitherto, and in the public life of the country not only amongst Hindus and Hindus and Muslims and Muslims and even between fathers and sons; people generally are desperate all over the country and your extreme program has for the moment struck the imagination mostly of the inexperienced youth and the ignorant and illiterate. All this means complete disorganization and chaos. What the consequence of this may be, I shudder to contemplate; but I for one am convinced that the present policy of the Government is the primary cause of it all and unless that cause is removed, the effects must continue. I have no voice or power to remove the cause; but at the same time I do not wish my countrymen to be dragged to the brink of a precipice in order to be shattered.” Jinnah further said: “The only way for the nationalists is to unite and work for a program, which is universally acceptable for the early attainment of complete responsible Government. Such a program cannot be dictated by any single individual, but must have the approval and support of all the prominent nationalist leaders in the country.” This was the beginning of the differences between Jinnah and Gandhi, which kept on widening with every passing day. Congress-League Sessions at Nagpur: The annual sessions of the Indian National Congress and the All India Muslim League were held in December 1920 at Nagpur.

107

Gandhi first moved his resolution at a meeting of the subject committee proposing “the attainment of Swaraj by the people of India by all legitimate and peaceful means.” Jinnah immediately objected that it was impractical and dangerous to dissolve the British connection without greater preparation for independence, but Gandhi argued: “I do not for one moment suggest that we want to end the British connection at all costs unconditionally. If the British connection is for the advancement of India we do not want to destroy it… I know before we have done with this great battle on which we have embarked, we have to go probably, possibly, through a sea of blood, but let it not be said of us that we are guilty of shedding blood, but let it be said by generations yet to be born that we suffered, that we shed not somebody’s blood but our own; and so I have no hesitation in saying that I do not want to show much sympathy for those who had their heads broken or who were said to be even in danger of losing their lives. What does it matter?”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 71)

Jinnah argued as best he could against the resolution but was shouted as well as voted down. “Bombay Chronicle” wrote an editorial on the incidence in which it was said: “…The whole atmosphere changed suddenly and when the question was put to the house, fifty thousand of the audience recorded their approval, but out of this vast assemblage, there was only one tall, thin man who had the courage to stand up to signify his dissent. Every one was astonished. Col. Wedgwood, who attended the Congress as a fraternal delegate of the Labour Party of England, exclaimed that

108

India was capable of producing at least one man who had the strength of character enough to stand by his conviction in the face of a huge opposition and no support whatsoever. This man of steel nerves was no other than Mohamad Ali Jinnah. He believed that the religious frenzy with which the whole political atmosphere was charged and which governed all spheres of activity would ultimately result in confusion, and would do more harm than good to India in general and to Muslims in particular, and therefore he remained aloof from the movement.”
(Mohamad Ali Jinnah by Matlubul Hassan Saiyid, pg 264-268)

“Times of India reported: “Jinnah alone rose and demanded to be heard in opposition, striding to the dais. Mr Jinnah with the usual smile on his face mounted the platform with ease suggestive of self-confidence and the conviction of the man, and opposed in an argumentative, lucid and clear style, the change of creed... He was howled down with cries of ‘shame, shame,’ and ‘political imposter.’ Even in this atmosphere, Jinnah continued to say, “At the moment the destinies of the country are in the hands of Gandhi. Therefore, standing on this platform, knowing as I do that he commands the majority in this assembly, I appeal to him to pause, to cry halt before it is too late.” Sir Chimanlal Setalvad in his ‘Recollections and Reflections, says: “Jinnah strongly opposed the change and boldly stood his ground in spite of violent opposition from a large part of the audience. After this, Jinnah parted with Congress.” Jawaharlal Nehru described the departure of Jinnah from the Congress in the following words:

109

“A few old leaders, however, dropped out of the Congress and among those a popular and well-known figure was that of Mr. M.A.Jinnah. Sarojini Naidu called him Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim Unity, and he had been largely responsible in the past for bringing the Muslim League nearer to Congress. But new developments in the Congress-Non Cooperation and the new constitution which made it more of a popular and mass organization-were thoroughly disapproved by him. He disagreed on political grounds. Temperamentally he did not fit in at all with the new Congress. He felt completely out of his element in the Khadi-clad crowed demanded speeches in Hindustani. The enthusiasm of the people outside struck him as mob-hysteria.
(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 78-79)

Stanley Wolpert in his book, ‘Jinnah of Pakistan,’ at page 72 says: “ It was the most bitterly humiliating experience of his (Jinnah) public life. He left Central India with Ruttie by the next train, the searing memory of his defeat at Nagpur permanently emblazoned on his brain. Whatever hopes he had of National leadership were buried that day. Gandhi had scaled the heights of political popularity; Jinnah plummeted over the precipice to a new low, reviled by fellow-Muslim Khilafat leaders even more than by Mahatma’s devoutest Hindu disciples. Shaukat Ali hated him and made no secret of his sentiments wherever he went.” Wolpert further says: “Though he had presided over the Muslim League only three months earlier, Jinnah did not even bother to attend its Nagpur session, rightly gauging the futility of his opposition to the Gandhi-Khilafat express. He had no more heart for

110

raucous confrontations that bitter December, no stomach left for the names he had been called. He had warned them openly of the futility of their battle plan, told them honestly of the havoc he correctly anticipated would be unleashed by and against the suddenly politicized masses. League had rejected his arguments as outmoded, cowardly, or invalid. There was no court of appeals left for the moment, so Jinnah went silently home-his “career” in politics a shambles, though hardly at an end.” Jinnah had earlier written to Gandhi in June 1919 from London asking him what he thought of Montagu’s Bill then in Parliament, and Gandhi replied: “…I cannot say anything about the Reforms Bill, I have hardly studied it. My preoccupation is Rowlett legislation…Our Reforms will be practically worthless, if we cannot repeal Rowlett legislation…And as I can imagine no form of resistance to the Government than civil disobedience, I propose, God willing, to resume it next week. I have taken all precautions, that are humbly possible to take, against recrudescence of violence.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 65)

After Nagpur session, Jinnah seemed to withdraw from politics. He did not attend League meeting for three years. He strove for Hindu-Muslim unity but, henceforth, only from Muslim shore and no longer from an All India boat. Khilafat Movement: The Khilafat Movement was started on 27th October 1919, when the day was observed as, “Khilafat Day,” all over India. Gandhi made an appeal to the Hindus to join the Muslims in fasting, prayer and hartal.

111

Gandhi did so to test the strength of Muslim feelings over the Khilafat, and the extent to which they were prepared for confrontation with the Government. At the same time, he wanted to assess the Hindu response to the Khilafat cause which was important for the success of Khilafat movement as well as for the future of Hindu Muslim unity. The first All India Khilafat Conference
rd

was

convened by Hakim Ajmal Khan on 23

November 1919

at Delhi. It was presided over by Fazlul Haq and among others attended by Gandhi and Swami Shraddhanand. Resolutions were passed to boycott the peace celeberations, to boycott British goods, to send a deputation to England and, if necessary to America, and to refuse to cooperate with the Government unless the Khilafat and the Holy places were treated inaccordance with Muslim desires. A sub-committee was appointed consisting of Syed Hosain, Fazlul Haq, Abdul Bari, Ajmal Khan to examin the questions of noncooperation further and to propose effective action.
(A Centenary History of the Indian National Congress: Dr. B.N. Pande, pp 295-296)

The Calcutta Provincial Khilafat Conference held on 29
th

February 1920 was another landmark in the of the agitation. It registered the

intensification

supremacy of the leadership of the extremist ulema over the movement. Abdul Bari’s violent speech on the second day was an important feature of the conference. He said: “The Holy Book urged that the Musalmans should never hope for friendship with Jews and Christians. Each Mohammedan should become a Saladin to check the flood of non-Muslims encroaching on the territories of

112

Muslims. They must be ready to give up their lives if necessary. The enemies of Islam were four crores and they were seven crores (the population in England and the Muslim population in India). Should they have to fight against them, they, the Mohammedans, had no guns or canon but they will have to try to injure them even by throwing bricks. Even if each Mohammedan were to throw a handful of dust at them they would be buried under the heap that would be raised. If the peace terms were unsatisfactory from that time, God had made every kind of retaliation legal from them. They could sacrifice every Christian life and property and still get Fatwa i.e. religious sanction and they would not have sinned before God, as Christians had burnt the Muslim’s heart. If he could get at his disposal canon and guns he would have preferred to declare war and burn Christians, having saturated them with kerosin oil.” The resolutions passed at the conference included a call for suspension of work on 19th March; resignation by every Muslim serving in the Indian Army if their religion is endangered; an appeal for the cooperation of the Hindus; a call for boycott of British goods; and approval of the movements of Mustafa Kamal and Envar Pasha and other Turk patriots. The said: “…In the Muslim organization or society, the authority to provide centralized direction rests with the prophet and his caliph. With the Ymayyad rule and thereafter the centralization came to be expressed not in religious terms but in the form of a monarchial universal Calcutta session was presided over by Maulana A.K. Azad. In his presidential address Azad

113

Khilafat. But it continued to remain a legal authority and a political center of the Muslim world. It is the duty of every Muslim to owe allegiance to the Khalifa and one who does not submit to him ceases to be a part of the community. On this point there is no difference between the Sunnis and the Shias. It is obligatory on the part of every Muslim to defend the Khilafat by means of Jihad which does not necessarily mean violence. Abolition of Khilafat would lead to chaos in the Islamic world.” Azad also suggested the necessity to struggle against the British who will allow one to pray but who will not permit one to uphold Khilafat, which is also a religious duty. The religious neutrality of the British is a fiction. He also said that those non-Muslims who do not invade Muslim lands and threaten Islam must be trusted and befriended. The Muslims must be united and disciplined and should join hands with the Hindus in their struggle against the British for the protection of Khilafat. In March 1920, the Khilafat Conference was held at Kanpur. It confirmed and reasserted the decisions taken at the Calcutta Provincial Khilafat Conference. The Kanpur Copnference decided to boycott the coming elections and support 19th the principles 1921 the was of ‘complete as independence.’ On 11th March 1920, observed

‘Khilafat Day’ throughout the country. April All-India Khilafat Committee met in Bombay and passed a reasolution to the effect that a second Khilafat Delegation be sent to Europe. It was also decided that no action other than propaganda should be taken for the present. When further action should become necessary, it should take

114

the

form

of

withdrawal

of

cooperation

with

the

Government, step by step, in the order shown below, which was drafted by a special committee of which Gandhi was the principal member. The other members were Shaukat Ali and Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. All Government-awarded titles and honours to be relinquished; Resignations by members of Councils; Private servants of officials to give up their jobs; Resignation of subordinate government servants including the police; Resignation of superior government servants; Withdrawal of Muslims from the army and Refusal to pay taxes. The Central Khilafat Committee met at Allahabad from 1st to 3rd June 1920 to decide its course of action in consultation with the Hindu leaders like Gandhi, Motilal Nehru, Tej Bahadur Sapru and Annie Basent. On 2nd June, Hasrat Mohani said that he was ready to join any Afghan army which might invade India to drive the British out. He was supported by Shaukat Ali, Zafar Ali Khan and Azad Subhani. The Hindu leaders not only disapproved of this but reacted strongly against it. On 3 rd June, in deference to Gandhi’s wishes, the noncooperation resolution was passed. On 9th June 1920, the Khilafat Conference again met at Allahabad and unanimously reaffirmed their resolve to resort to non-cooperation and appointed an Executive Committee to enforce and lay down a detailed program. Gandhi was the only Hindu taken on the Executive Committee. On 22nd June 1920, Muslims sent a message to the Viceroy stating that they would start non-cooperation, if the Turkish grievances were not redressed before 1st August 1920. On the same day,

115

Gandhi also sent a letter to the Viceroy explaining the justice of the Khilafat cause, the reasons why he has taken up the cause and necessity of strengthening the hands of Khilafatists. The position taken by Gandhi is given below in his own words: “In my opinion, The Turkish claim is not only not immoral and unjust, but it is highly equitable, only because Turkey wants to retain what is her own. And the Mahomedan manifesto has definitely declared that whatever guarantee may be necessary to be taken for the protection of the non-Muslim and non-Turkish races, should be taken so as to give the Christians theirs and the Arabs their self-government under the Turkish suzerainty. “I do not believe the Turk to be weak, incapable or cruel. He is certainly disorganized and probably without good generalship. The argument of weakness, incapacity and cruelty one often hears quoted in connection with those from whom power is sought to be taken away. About the alleged massacres a proper commission has been asked for, but never granted. And in any case security can be taken against oppression: “I have already stated that, if I were not interested in the Indian Mahomedans, I would not interest myself in the welfare of the Turks any more than I am in that of the Austrians or Poles. But I am bound as an Indian to share the sufferings and trials of fellow-Indians. If I deem the Mahomedan to be my brother, it is my duty to help him in his hour of peril to the best of my ability, if his cause commends itself to me as just; “It is, therefore, a matter of feeling and opinion. It is expedient to suffer for my Mahomedan brother to the

116

utmost in a just cause and I should, therefore, travel with him along the whole road so long as the means employed by him are as honourable as his end. I cannot regulate the Mahomedan feeling. I must accept his statement that the Khilafat is with him a religious question in the sense that it binds him to reach the goal even at the cost of his own life.”
(Young India, 2nd June 1920)

On 30th June 1920, Khilafat Committee meeting held at Allahabad resolved to start non-cooperation after a month’s notice to the Viceroy. Notice was given on 1st July 1920 and non-cooperation commenced on 1st August 1920. Addressing the Committee, Gandhi said: “This is going to be a great struggle…You must be prepared to lose everything, and you must subject yourself to the strictest non-violence and discipline. When war is declared, martial law prevails; and in our non-violent struggle, there will also have to be dictatorship and martial law on our side if we are to win. You have every right to kick me out, to demand my head, or to punish me whenever and howsoever you choose. But, so long as you keep to choose me as your leader, you must accept dictatorship and the discipline of the martial law, and you must accept my conditions. But that dictatorship, will always be subject to your good-will and to your acceptance and to your co-operation. The moment you have had enough of me, throw me out, trample upon me, and I shall not complain.” Gandhi then directed his energies to persuade the Congress to adopt non-cooperation and strengthen the Khilafat Movement. He traveled all over India between 1st August and 1st September 1920, with Ali Brothers,

117

impressing upon the people the necessity of noncooperation. The Congress at its special session held at Calcutta on 7th and 8th September 1920 passed the following resolution, which was carried by 1886 votes against 884 votes. The motion was opposed by C.R.Das, B.C.Pal, Annie Basent, Rabindranath Tagore and Jinnah. “In view of the fact that on the Khilafat question both the Indian and Imperial Governments have signally failed in their duty towards the Muslims of India and the Prime Minister has deliberately broken his pledged word given to them, and that it is the duty of every nonMuslim Indian in every legitimate manner to assist his Muslim brother in his attempt to remove religious calamity that has overtaken him; “And in view of the fact that, in the matter of the events of the April of 1919, both the said Governments have grossly neglected or failed to protect the innocent people of the Punjab and punish officers guilty of unsoldierly and barbarous behaviour towards them, and have exonerated Sir Michael O’Dwyer who proved himself directly responsible for most of the official crimes and callous to the sufferings of the people placed under his administration, and that the debate in the House of Lords betrayed a woeful lack of sympathy with the people of India, and systematic terrorism and frightfulness adopted in the Punjab, and that the latest Viceregal pronouncement is proof of entire absence of repentance in the matters of the Khilafat and the Punjab; “This Congress is of opinion that there can be no contentment in India without redress of the two aforementioned wrongs, and that the only effectual

118

means to vindicate national honour and to prevent a repetition of similar wrongs in future is the establishment of Swarajya. “This Congress is further of opinion that there is no course left open for the people of India but to approve of and adopt the policy of progressive non-violent noncooperation inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi, until the said wrongs are righted and Swarajya is established.” In November 1920, about 500 ulema signed a Muttafiqa fatwa making non-cooperation a duty and declared it lawful to join hands with the Hindus under the leadership of Gandhi. Gandhi returned the Kaiser-e-Hind Medal and the Zulu and Boer War Medals awarded to him by the British for his services in those wars. While doing so, he wrote: “Valuable as these honours have been to me, I cannot wear them with an easy conscience so long as my Musalman countrymen have to labour under the wrong done to their religious sentiments. I venture to return these Medals, in pursuance of the scheme of noncooperation in connection with Khilafat movement.” Gandhi further said: “I would, in order to achieve success in the Khilafat issue, even postpone the issue of Swaraj.” In the Bareilly Khilafat Conference held in March 1921, Azad said that the complete independence of the country was necessary for the integrity of the Islamic Shariat. The idea of the establishment of Dar-ul-Qaza (House of Justice) was also mooted. The All-India Khilafat Conference met at Meerut from 7 to 10th April 1921. One of the resolutions passed at this Conference stated that the Muslims were bound to adhere to non-cooperation until Swaraj was won. In the
th

119

District Conference held on 19th June 1921, at Belgaum, which was attended by Mohamed Ali, it was resolved that an Indian Republic should be declared in consultation with the Indian National Congress, if Great Britain, directly or through the Greeks, fought the Turkish Government at Angora. In the All India Khilafat Conference held in July 1921 at Karachi, the Khilafat leaders held out a threat that if Britain waged war against Turkey, the Muslims would be compelled to launch a civil disobedience movement and also declare India an Independent Republic at the next session of the Congress at Allahabad. The Khilafat agitation received a jolt with the outbreak of Moplah rebellion in Malabar. It was marred by acts of violence and retaliation between the Hindu and Muslim communities. The Government considered that it was the fanaticism of the Muslims and religious orientation of the Khilaft movement that was responsible for the Moplah uprising against the Hindu landlords.
(A Centenary History of Indian National Congress: Dr. B.N.Pande, pg 299-303)

The

All-India

Khilafat

Conference

met

at

Ahemadabad in December 1921 with Hakim Ajmal Khan as its president. A resolution to declare independence without foreign control was passed. Another resolution stated that, for the success of Khilafat cause, and for the achievement of Swaraj for the country and justice for the Punjab, the Central Khilafat Committee would issue instructions disobedience. A manifesto was issued by Hakim Ajmal Khan, Dr. Ansari, M.M.Chotani, Dr. Syed Mahmud and from time to time regarding civil

120

A.H.S.Khatri declaring that it was the duty of the Indian Muslims to make their voices heard and to warn the Powers that only the complete acceptance of the Khilafat demands by the nations of Europe would satisfy the Islamic people of Asia and Africa. To achieve this, they were asked to fill the gaols of British India when our Director Mahatma Gandhi bids us; and to preserve nonviolence and Hindu-Muslim unity at all costs because success depends on it. This was confirmed by the Central Khilafat Committee meeting held at Bombay on 12th and 13th January 1922. To those Hindus, who wanted to give support to Khilafat on the condition that the Muslims give up cow killing, Gandhi in “Young India” of 10th December 1919 wrote: “The Hindus may not open the Goraksha (cow protection) question here. The test of friendship is assistance in adversity, and that too, unconditional assistance. Cooperation that needs consideration is a commercial contract and not friendship. Conditional cooperation is like adulterated cement, which does not bind. It is the duty of the Hindus, if they see the justice of the mahomedan cause to render cooperation. If the Mahomedans feel themselves bound in honour to spare the Hindu’s feelings and to stop cow killing, they may do so, no matter whether the Hindus cooperate with them or not. Though therefore, I yield to no Hindu in my worship of the cow, I do not want to make the stopping of cow killing cow.” To those Hindus, who feared to join the Noncooperation Movement for the reasons that Muslims may a condition precedent to cooperation. Unconditional cooperation means the protection of the

121

invite the Afghans to invade India, Gandhi in “Young India of 9th June 1920 wrote: “It is easy enough to understand and justify the Hindu caution. It is difficult to resist the Mahomedan position. In my opinion, the best way to prevent India from becoming the battle ground between the forces of Islam and those of the English is for Hindus to make non-cooperation a complete and immediate success, and I have little doubt that, if the Mahomedans remain true to their declared intention and are able to exercise selfrestraint and make sacrifices, the Hindus will play the game and join them in the campaign of non-cooperation. I feel equally certain that Hindus will not assist Mahomedans in promoting or bringing about an armed conflict between the British Government and their allies, and Afghanistan. British forces are too well organized to admit of any successful invasion of the Indian frontier. The only way, therefore, the Mahomedans can carry on an effective struggle on behalf of the honour of Islam is to take up non-cooperation in real earnest. It will not only be completely effective, if it is adopted by the people on an extensive scale, but it will also provide full scope for individual conscience. If I cannot bear an injustice done by an individual or a corporation, and, I am directly or indirectly instrumental in upholding that individual or corporation, I must answer for it before my Maker; but I have done all that is humanly possible for me to do consistently with the moral code that refuses to injure even the wrong-doers, if I cease to support the injustice in the manner described above. In applying, therefore, such a great force, there should be no haste, there should be no temper shown. Non-cooperation must be

122

and remain absolutely a voluntary effort. The whole thing, then, depends upon Mahomedans themselves. If they will but help themselves, Hindu help will come and the Government, great and mighty though it is, will have to bend before the bloodless opposition of a whole nation.” Unfortunately Government can the hope of Gandhi the that no possibly withstand bloodless

opposition of the whole nation did not come true. Within a year of the starting of the Non-cooperation Movement, Gandhi had to admit that the Muslmans had grown impatient. He said: “In their impatient anger, the Musalmans ask for more energetic and more prompt action by the Congress and Khilafat organizations. To the Musalmans, Swaraj means, as it must mean, India’s ability to deal effectively with the Khilafat question. The Musalmans, therefore, decline to wait if the attainment of Swaraj means indefinite delay of a program that may require the Musalmans of India to become impotent witnesses of the extinction of Turkey in European waters. “It is impossible not to sympathise with this attitude. I would gladly recommend immediate action if I could think of any effective course. I would gladly ask for postponement of Swaraj activity if thereby we could advance the interest of Khilafat. I could gladly take up measures outside non-coopertion, if I could think of any, in order to assuage the pain caused to the millions of the Musalmans. “But, in my humble opinion, attainment of Swaraj is the quickest method of writing the Khilafat wrong. Hence it is, that for me the solution of the Khilafat

123

question is attainment of Swaraj and vice versa. The only way to help the affiliated Turks is for India to generate sufficient power in time, there is no way out for India and she must resign herself to the inevitable. What can a paralytic do to stretch forth a helping hand to a neighbour but to try to cure himself of his paralysis? Mere ignorant, thoughtless and angry outburst of violence may give vent to pent-up rage but can bring no relief to Turkey.” The Musalmans were not in a mood to listen to the advice of Gandhi. They refused to worship the principle of non-violence. They were not prepared to wait for Swaraj. And the Muslims in their impatience did exactly what the Hindus feared. They extended invitation to the Afghans to invade India. This is evident from the letter written by Maulana Mohamed Ali to the Ruler of Afghanistan, Amir Amannulah. Mohamed Ali in his letter said: “The presence of the Kings of Islam is a great blessing from Allah. You should know that the country of Hindustan is a large land. In olden days, the Kings of Islam had struggled hard and for a long in order to conquer this foreign country. They could do it only in several turns. Every Muslim King got mosques erected in his territory, and created Madrasas. Muslims of Arabia and ajam (non-Arab Muslim lands) migrated from their own lands and arrived in these territories. They became agents for the publicity and spread of Islam here. Uptil now their descendants are firm in the ways of Islam. Among the non-Muslim communities, one is that of Marhatah (Maratha). They have a chief. For some time past, this community has been raising its head, and has become influential all over Hindustan. It is easy to defeat

124

Marhatah community, provided the ghazis of Islam gird up their loins and show courage.” Ali further said: “In the countryside between Delhi and Agra, the Jat community used to till the land. In the reign of Shahjahan, this community had been ordered not to ride on horses, or keep muskets with them, or build fortresses for themselves. The Kings that came later became careless, and this community has used the opportunity for building many forts, and collecting muskets. “In the reign of Muhammad Shah, the impudence of this community crossed all limits. And Surajmal, the cousin of Churaman, became its leader. He took to rebellion. Therefore, the city of Bayana which was an ancient seat of Islam, and where Ulama and Sufis had lived for seven hundred years, has been occupied by force and terror, and Muslims have been turned out of it with humiliation and hurt. Whatever, influence and oprestige is left with the kingship at present is wielded by the Hindus. For no one except them is there in the ranks of managers and officials. Their houses are full of wealth and varieties. Muslims live in a state of utter poverty and deprivation. The story is long and cannot be summerised. What I mean to say is that the country of Hindustan has passed under the power of non-Muslims. In this age, except Your Majesty, there is no other king who is powerful and great, who can defeat the enemies, and who is farsighted and experienced in war.” Mohammed Ali continued: “It is Your Majesty’s bounden duty (Farz-I-ain) to invade Hindustan, to destroy the power of the Marhatahs, and to free the down-and-out Muslims from the clutches of non-

125

Muslims. Allah forbid, if the power of infidels remains in its present position, Muslims will renounce Islam and not even a brief period will pass before Muslims become such a community as will no more know how to distinguish between Islam and non-Islam. This will be a great tragedy. Due to the grace of Allah, no one except Your Majesty has the capacity for preventing this tragedy from taking place. “We who are the servants of Allah and who recognize the Prophet as our saviour, appeal to you in the name of Allah that you should turn your holy attention to this direction and face the enemies, so that a great merit is added to the roll of your deeds in the house of Allah and your name is included in the list of mujahidin fi Sabilallah (warriors in the service of Allah). May you acquire plunder beyond measure, and may the Muslims be freed from the stranglehold of the infidels. I seek refuse in Allah when I say that you should not act like Nadir Shah who oppressed and suppressed the Muslims, and went away leaving the Marahatahs and the Jats whole and prosperous. “The enemies have become more powerful after Nadir Shah, the army of Islam has disintegrated, the Empire of Delhi has become childrens’ play. Allah forbid, if the infidels continue as at present, and Muslims get further weakened, the very name of Islam will get wiped out. When your fearsome army reaches a place where Muslims and non-Muslims live together, your administrators must take particular care. They must be instructed that those weak Muslims who live in the countryside should be taken to towns and cities. Next, some such administrators should be appointed in towns

126

and cities as would see to it that the properties of the Muslims are not plundered, and the honour of no Muslim is compromised.”
(Khilafat Experiment: A Himalyan Blunder by Madhu Deolekar, pg 13-15)

Surprisingly, Gandhi supported Ali Brothers in inviting Amir of Afghanistan to invade India. When asked, he said: “…They have done nothing, which I would not do. If they had sent a message to Amir, I also would send one to inform the Amir that if he came, no Indian so long as I can help it, would help the Government to drive him back.” Gandhi’s decision to support Khilafat Movement was criticized by some of his collegues, contemporary thinkers and leaders of political shades. I reproduce below a few: M. C. Chagla: “Muslim League believed in the cause of HinduMuslim unity and was entirely a secular institution, except for the name. People like Jinnah and Mazrul Haq, who belonged to the League, had no truck with the fanatical Muslims whom the Khilafat movement had thrown up. I have always felt that Gandhiji was wrong in trying to bring about Hindu-Muslim unity by supporting the cause of the Khilafat. Such unity was built on shifting sands. So long as the religious cause survived, the unity was there; but once that cause was removed the unity showed its weakness. All the Khilafatists who had been attracted to the Congress came out in their true colours, that is, as more devoted to their religion than to their country. The Muslim League wanted to fight this

127

element and to make common cause with the secular Congress.”
(Roses in December by M.C.Chagla, pg 78)

B. R. Ambedkar: “There were many people who doubted the ethical basis of the Khilafat movement and tried to dissuade Mr. Gandhi from taking part in a movement, the ethical basis of which was so questionable. But Mr Gandhi had so completely persuaded himself of the justice of the Khilafat agitation that he refused to yield to their advice. Time and again he argued that the cause was just and it was his duty to join it.”
(Pakistan or Partition of India by Dr. B.R.Ambedkar, Vol. 8, pg 152)

Koenraad Elst-A Belgian Scholor: “Gandhi’s trail of fruitless concessions to Muslim demands started with the Khilafat movement, the movement in support of the preservation of the Ottoman Caliphate and its restoration to sovereignty over the sacred places of Islam. This movement, opposed by Muslim modernists like Mohammad Ali Jinnah, was led by the brothers Mohammad and Shaukat Ali, to whom Gandhi offered the Congress as a platform further and says: organizational instrument.” Koenraad

“British rulers were able, out of Indian resources, continuously to make concessions to Muslims and to keep the various communities divided. By 1919 Gandhi had become desperate in his endeavours to get the Muslims to trust him and went from one absurd promise to another. He promised a blank cheque to the Muslims. He backed the Khilafat movement and was able to enlist the full support of the National Congress in that policy.

128

The Ali Brothers became defacto Muslim leaders. Gandhi welcomed this as the coming promise of leadership of the Muslims. He made most of the Ali Brothers, raised them to the skies by flattery and unending concessions; but what he wanted never happened.” V.S.Srinivasa Sastri, C.Y.Cintamani and C.F.Andrews candidly told Gandhi that his speeches and writings were such as to justify the act of Mohammad Ali’s invitation to the Amir of Afghanistan. Ms. Annie Basent said: “…Since the Khilafat agitation, things have changed and it has been one of the many injuries inflicted on India by the encouragement of the Khilafat crusade, that the inner Muslim feeling of hatred against unbelievers has sprung up, naked and unashamed, as in the years gone by. We have seen revived, as guide in practical politics, the old Muslim religion of the sword, we have seen the dragging out of centuries of forgetfulness, the old exclusiveness, claiming the Jazirut-Arab, the island of Arabia, as a holy land which may not be trodden by the polluting foot of a nonMuslim, we have heard Muslim leaders declared that if the Afghans invaded India, they would join their fellow believers, and would slay Hindus who defended their motherland against the foe; We have been forced to see that the primary allegiance of Musalmans is to Islamic countries, not to our motherland; We have learned that their dearest hope is to establish the Kingdom of God, not God as Father of the world, loving all his creatures, but as a God seen through Musalman spectacles resembling in his command through one of the prophets, as to the treatment of unbelievers-the Mosaic JEHOVA of the early Hebrews, when they were fighting as did the early

129

Muslims, for freedom to follow the religion given to them by their prophet. The claim now put forward by Musalman leaders that they must obey the laws of their particular prophet above the laws of the State in which they live, is subversive of civic order and the stability of the State; it makes them bad citizens for their center of allegiance is outside the nation and they cannot, while they hold the views proclaimed by Maulana Mahomed Ali and Shaukat Ali, to name the most prominent of these Muslim leaders, be trusted by their fellowcitizens. If India were independent the Muslim part of the population-for the ignorant masses would follow those who appealed to them in the name their prophet-would become an immediate peril to India’s freedom. Allying themselves with Afghanistan, Baluchistan, Persia, Iraq, Arabia, Turkey and Egypt and with such of the tribes of Central Asia who are Musalmans, they would rise to place India under the Rule of Islam and would establish Musalman Rule. We had thought that Indian Musalmans are loyal to their motherland, and indeed, we still hope that some of the educated class might strive to prevent such a Musalman rising; but they are too few for effective resistance and would be murdered as apostates. Malabar has taught us what Islamic rule still means, and we do not want to see another specimen of the ‘Khilafat Raj’ in India. How much sympathy with the Moplas is felt by Muslims outside Malabar has been proved by the defence raised for them by their fellow believers, and by Mr. Gandhi himself, who stated that they had acted as they believed that religion taught them to act… People living in the 20th century must either educate people who hold these Middle Age views, or else exile them. Their place is

130

in countries sharing their opinions, where they can still use such arguments against any who differ from them.”
(Pakistan or Partition of India: Dr.B.R.Ambedkar, pg 274-275)

Rabindranath

Tagore

in

his

interview

to

a

Bengalee paper said that he could definitely state that even such men as Mahomed Ali had declared that under no circumstances was it permissible for any Mohamedan, whatever his country might be, to stand against any other Mohamedan. The tenet of Islam says that in a country which is not under Muslim rule wherever there is a conflict between Muslim law and the law of the land, the former must prevail over the latter and a Muslim will be justified in obeying the Muslim law and defying the law of the land. According to Muslim Canon Law the world is divided into two camps, Dar-ul-Islam (Abode of Islam) and Dar-ul-Harb (Abode of war). A country is Dar-ulIslam when it is ruled by Muslims. A country is Dar-ulHarb when Muslims only reside in it but are not rulers of it. That being the Canon Law of the Muslims, India cannot be the common motherland of the Hindus and the Musalmans. It can be the land of the Musalmans-but it cannot be the land of the Hindus and the Musalman living as equals. Further, it can be the land of the Musalmans only when, it is governed by the Muslims. The moment the land becomes subject to the authority of a non-Muslim power, it ceases to be the land of the Muslims. Instead of being Dar-ul-Islam it becomes Darul-Harb.
(Pakistan or Partition of India by Dr.B.R.Ambedkar, pg 294)

131

While speaking at Aligarh and Ajmer Mahomed Ali, who was President of the Indian national Congress, said: “However pure Mr. Gandhi’s character may be, he must appear to me from the point of view of religion inferior to any Musalman, even though he be without character.” Mahomed Ali was asked at a meeting held in Luckhnow whether the sentiments attributed to him were true. Mahomed Ali without any hesitation or compunction replied: “Yes, according to my religion and creed, I do hold an adulterous and a fallen Musalman to be better than Mr. Gandhi.”
(Pakistan or partion of India by Dr.B.R.Ambedkar, pg 302)

Gains of Khilafat Movement: The biggest gain of the Khilaft movement was the communal harmony during 1919-1922. The approaches of Gandhi and of the Khilafat leaders were identical. They believed that true understanding of religion would bring about Hindu-Muslim unity. Gandhi always defended his participation in the Khilafat movement. ‘Had I been a prophet and foreseen all that has happened, I should have still thrown myself into the Khilafat agitation.’ It was not possible ‘to induce Musalmans to take interest in Swaraj except in terms of the Khilafat.’ The Khilafat leaders agreed with Gandhi that Hindu participation in the Khilafat movement and Muslim refusal to kill the cow would ensure harmony and unity between the two communities. The Khilafat leaders appealed to their coreligionists to abandon cow killing but there was no consensus on this front from the ulema. On 31st January 1920, a deputation of the Muslims waited upon Abdul Bari to discuss his stand on cow slaughter. He told them that he never asserted that cow sacrifice was forbidden to

132

good Muslims, but in view of the attitude Hindus had adopted over the Khilafat question, Muslims should respect their prejudices as far as possible and refrain from cow slaughter whenever other animals could equally well be sacrificed. What Gandhi said about the Khilafat movement is true: “In spite of the present strained relations between the two communities, both have gained as a result of the movement. The awakening of the masses, it itself a tremendous gain.” Maulana converted the Abul Kalam Azad of said: the “Gandhi Muslim religious problem

community in the country, especially of the Hindus and Muslims. The achievement of Hindu-Muslim unity was the great contributionm of the Khilafat movement. This was based on the Quranic injunction which lays down that there are two kinds of non-Muslims: Those who attack Muslim religion and property, and those who are not inimical to Islam and the Muslims. In the first category are the British; in the second are the Hindus with whom friendship and cooperation was required by Quranic mandate. Therefore, cooperation with the British, in any form, is Kufr and the assertion of united nationhood is a duty enjoined by the Quran. The prophet, on the basis of the same principle united the different tribes of Madina and formed one nation.” The religious nature of the Khilafat question and Gandhi’s championship of the issue added a radically different dimension to the national struggle of the anticolonialism, an unprecedented degree of Hindu-Muslim unity and Muslim association with the Congress.

133

Dr. Ambedkar said: “In taking up the cause of Khilafat Mr. Gandhi achieved a double purpose. He carried the Congress plan of winning over the Muslims to its culmination. Secondly, he made the Congress a power in the country, which it would not have been if the Muslims had not joined it. The cause of the Khilafat appealed to the Musalmans far more than political safeguards, with the results that the Musalmans who were outside it trooped in the Congress. The Hindu welcomed them. For, they saw in this a common front against the British, which was their main aim.” Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak was also sympathetically disposed towards the Khilafat question. The Ali Brothers regarded him as their Guru. Tilak’s newspapers ‘Marhatta’ and ‘Kesari’ upheld the cause of Khilafat. I have enumerated the details of the Khilafat movement as much as I could to show that the Muslim League had insignificant role to play in the Khilafat movement for the reasons that the membership of the League in 1919 was only 777. After three years, it increased to 1097 and its income from subscription and donations was extremely meager. Its leadership consisted the titled gentry, nawabs, landlords and ‘yes Sir’ (jee huzurs), who were generally well meaning gentlemen but wanted to serve the Muslim cause only so far as it did not affect their position either socially or in Government quarters. They were all wedded to constitutional methods. Commenting on the nature of Muslim league, Abdul Bari wrote to M.M.Chotani: “You are well acquainted with the attitudes of the members of the League. They never undertake any

134

responsibility on their shoulder in taking up a difficult question, but only look to their own interests with a view to guard their prestige. They merely speak but do not care to see that good results are derived from their demands.” The Khilafat leaders also did not approve of the atrtitude of the leaders like Amir Ali and the Aga Khan. Yakub Hasan wrote to Mohamed Ali on 29th January 1920: “Altough Right Honourable Amir Ali and H.H. Aga Khan have made representations to the authorities from time to time about Turkey, much still remains to be done there. You are aware that these two leaders are timid. They always discourage agitation for fear of losing the sympathy of few Europeans who support the cause of Turkey not for the love of Muslims but only in the best interest of the British Empire itself.” Jinnah refused to join the Khilafat movement on the ground that he was opposed to the Indian Muslims engaging themselves in extra-territorial affairs relating to Muslims outside India. He vehemently opposed the stand taken by Gandhi on Khilafat question and warned him not to encourage the fanaticism of the Muslim religious leaders and their followers. Jinnah proved his wisdom and vision in not joining the Khilafat movement. M.R.Jaykar in his letter of 8th September 1925 to Lajpat Rai wrote: “The unity of Khilafat days was artificial and unreal, more formal than intimate. It was artificial because it did not spring from any concrete or tangible interests but was built on a foundation of religious sentimentalism.”

135

Gandhi’s

suspension

of

the

non-cooperation

movement and the abolition of the Khilafat by the Turks themselves created an awkward situation for the Indian Khilafat leaders. The ulema ceased to carry much weight in Indian politics after 1922. They complained that they had been only made a catspaw by the educated Muslims and Gandhi who were now only too anxious to get rid of them. The secular politicians’ break with the ulema was inevitable as their alliance rested on shaky foundation. But the ulema’s participation in the Khilafat and noncooperation movement paved the way for the subsequent growth of Muslim nationalism. By its emphasis on Islam, the movement made the Muslims conscious of their being Muslims and that too Muslims first and Indian afterwards. This proved the biggest blow to HinduMuslim unity. The active part that the ulema played in the Khilafat movement and their unceasing repeatation of the religious idiom proved powerful factors leading to the Hindu-Muslim divide. The independent existence of the Khilafat Committee throughout the period 1919-1922 should also be considered as a factor in separating the Muslims from the Congress organization and the national movement. This became evident after the abolition of the Khilafat by Mustafa Kamal Pasha. Many prominent Khilafat leaders parted company with Gandhi. Subhas Chandra Bose, however, held that this development was not due to any mistake on Gandhi’s part. He said: “The real mistake, in my opinion, did not lie in connecting the Khilafat issue with other national issues, but in allowing the Khilafat Committee to be set up as an

136

independent organization throughout the country, quite apart from Indian national Congress. If no separate Khilafat Committee had been organized and all the Khilafat Muslims had been persuaded to join the ranks of the Indian National Congress, they would probably have been absorbed by the latter when the Khilafat issue became a dead one.” The Ali Brothers left Gandhi and continued to be attached to the Central Khilafat, Committee which had become an anachronism after the end of Khilafat. Hakim Ajmal Kahan and many of the U.P. Muslim politicians felt that a change was essential in the Congress policy, particularly regarding Council entry. These leaders joined Swaraj Party-a party within the Congress-formed by C.R.Das and Motilal Nehru. Council entry was a major issue, which divided the Congress into ‘changers and nochangers.’ But an equally important issue, which agitated the minds of Congressmen was the increasing incidence of the communal violence throughout the country. It also divided the Congressmen along communal lines. The Hindu Maha Sabha was founded by the end of 1922 with which were associated men like Lajpat Rai and Madan Mohan Malviya. Shuddhi and Sangathan movements were also started in 1923. They were accompanied by the movements of Tabligh and Tanzim. The Hindu-Muslim unity of the Khilafat days was being replaced by communal polarization. The Khilafat and noncooperation movements were being analysed in terms of the gains and losses of the Hindus and Muslims. Communal harmony was discredited as mere claptrap. The talk of ‘crystallizing Hindu public opinion’ and

137

uniting all Hindus for shaping the destiny of Hindu nation became quite frequent. Muslim leaders began to express anxiety for the defence of the Muslim interests, and as a result the relations between the communities were so greatly strained that each community had practically arrayed itself in an armed camp against each other.
(A Centenary History of Indian National Congress: Dr. B.N.Pande, pg 314-315)

Khilafat movement, after a brilliant beginning, pettered out, taking along with it the last chance of Hindu-Muslim unity.
(Pilgrimage to Freedom: K.M.Munshi, pg 22)

Nehru Report: Lord Birkenhead, Secretary of State for India believed that the Hindus and Muslims were irreconcilable and all the conferences in the world cannot bridge the unbridgeable. Nevertheless, early in 1928, he challenged the Indian leaders to produce their own scheme of constitution, instead of always indulging in mere destructive criticism of the Government. The challenge led first to All Parties Conference in Bombay. A Committee was appointed under the Chairmanship of Motilal Nehru. The members of the committee were, Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru, Subhash Chandra Bose, M.R.Jayakar, Sir Ali Imam, G.R.Pradhan, Shoib Qureshi, N.M.Joshi, M.S.Aney and Sardar Mangal Singh. This committee later came to be called, “Nehru Committee.” The Committee met at Lucknow to draft the Report. Motilal Nehru anticipated Jinnah’s objections and to adopt position acceptable to him on the most

138

thorny issues, he invited M.C. Chagla to Lucknow. Chagla participated in the prolonged discussions, which ultimately resulted in the publication of the Nehru Report in August 1928. A copy of the Report reached Jinnah at Eden, on his way home. Chagla in his book, “Roses in December,” at pages 95-97 says: “…My contribution to the Report was my steadfast adherence to the belief in joint electorates. Motilal Nehru for a moment thought, that in order to get the minorities to accept the Report, we should agree to separate electorates. I argued we were drafting a constitution not for the present but for the future-a document, which was expected to endure for a long time, and we must not therefore incorporate into it any principle which on the face of it was anti-national. Ultimately Motilal agreed, and joint electorates were accepted as one of the basic principles of the Nehru Report.” Chagla further says: “The draft Report came up before an All Parties Conference in Lucknow in August. I was there, and on behalf of the Muslim League I accepted the Report. At that time Jinnah was in England. Soon thereafter he returned and I went on board the ship to see him before he landed. I went to his cabin and found him in furious temper. He shouted at me; “What right did you have to accept the Nehru Report on behalf of the Muslim League? Who authorized you? I told him that whatever I had done, I had done according to my lights and in the best interest of the community and the country. And I pleaded with him: “Please do not rush to the press and issue a statement rejecting the report out of hand. Listen to what I have to say first, and then

139

decide.” After thinking for a moment he said: “All right, I will reserve judgment, we will consider the report at a regular meeting of the League.” On a question from the press, Jinnah said that he had not yet had enough time to digest the Nehru Report. He further said: “The signatories and various prominent men who met at Lucknow had made an effort towards the Hindu-Muslim unity. One cannot help appreciating their great endeavour. However, the Nehru Report and the decisions of the Lucknow Conference are not like the laws of the Medas and Persians, the last word in the matter.” At Lucknow, the meeting of the Muslim League council did not go as Jinnah hoped, and to his personal disappointment he found many Muslim collegues so enamoured of the Nehru Report that he dared not call for a vote on it in early November. Even the Maharaja of Mahmudabad, who was elected that year’s president of the Muslim League, liked the report and was ready to accept it. Chagla was overjoyed to find so many allies and hoped Jinnah would see the wisdom of his earlier actions, but Jinnah remained set against the Nehru constitution, viewing it only a “Hindu Document.” Motilal Nehru, Dr. Ansari and Abul Kalam Azad met Jinnah in Lucknow, urging him to attend a special meeting of the Nehru Committee before the League or the Congress met in December. And before the All Parties Convention was convened in Calcutta, to try to fashion a compromise formula on communal issues. Jinnah turned them down. He still insisted that first his League has to meet and officially take its stand. He asked Motilal Nehru to postpone the convention till early next year after both

140

annual

sessions

of

League

and

Congress.

Jinnah

returned to Bombay and prepared for a Provincial League meeting, which was held on 23rd November, hoping at least to win a majority in his home town. But, Chagla stood up and argued so effectively for the Nehru Report that Jinnah adjourned the meeting without putting the question to a vote.
(Jinnah of Pakistan: Stanley Wolpert, pg 99)

All Parties Convention as scheduled started in Calcutta on 22nd December 1928. Dr. Ansari’s eloquent presidential address calling on his co-religionists to endorse the Nehru Report, fell on deaf ears. He pointed out that constitutional safeguards were “bounties on inefficiency.” A minority that became accustomed to special protection can never acquire the ability to face the competition. It would in fact sink deeper and deeper into ignorance, fanaticism and sloth to be stifled ultimately by those, who had adhered to offer it a partial support.” Pleading for a national approach to the Nehru Committee’s recommendations, Dr. Ansari said: “I am unable to understand the mentality which is not satisfied with what the draft constitution has given but would ask for more in a manner as if any denial involved a question of life and death.” He recalled what a Committee of the League of Nations had said earlier. The expert international body observed: “The true safeguard of a minority is the good-will of the majority.” Dr. Ansari was convinced that it would be possible to promote communal concord by accepting the Swaraj Constitution unreservedly.
(M.R.Jayakar: V.B.Kulkarni, pg 124)

141

Chagla in his book, ‘Roses in December’ says: “In the Subject Committee of the League, we sat up till about 2 a.m. discussing the Nehru Report. Jinnah was in favour of outright rejection. I appealed to him that we should not reject it outright, but instead suggest amendments, which might be accepted by the Convention. After a long and protracted debate, we ultimately decided to accept the Nehru Report with amendments. Jinnah moved four amendments to the Nehru Reoport in the All-Parties Convention held at Calcutta in the last week of December 1928. Speaking on the first amendment relating to the Muslim demand for 33 1/3 % representation in the Central Legislature, Jinnah said: “The Nehru Report has stated that according to the scheme which they propose the Muslims are likely to get one-third in the Central Legislature and perhaps more, and it is argued that the Punjab and Bengal will get much more than their population proportion. If onethird is going to be obtained by Muslims, then the method which you have adopted is not quite fair to the provinces where the Muslims are in a minority because the Punjab and Bengal will obtain more than their population basis in the Central Legislature. You are going to give to the rich more and keeping the poor according to population. It may be sound reasoning but it is not wisdom. “Therefore, if the Musalmans are, as the Nehru Report suggest, to get one-third, or more, they cannot give the Punjab or Bengal more, but let six or seven extra seats be distributed among provinces which are already in a very small minority, such as, Madras and Bombay,

142

because, if Sind is separated, the Bombay Province will be reduced to something like 8%. There are other provinces where we have small minorities. This is the reason why we say, fix one-third and let it be distributed among Muslims according to our own adjustment.” The second amendment related to the reservation of seats on population basis in the Punjab and Bengal i.e. the claim to a statutory majority. On this Jinnah said: “That originally proposals emanated from certain Muslim leaders in March 1927 known as the ‘Delhi Proposals.’ They were dealt with by the All India Congress Committee in Bombay and at the Madras Congress and the Muslim League in Calcutta last year substantially endorsed at least this part of the proposal. I am not going into the detailed arguments. It really reduces itself into one proposition, that the voting strength of the Mahomedans in the Punjab and Bengal, although they are in a majority, is not in proportion to their population. That was one of the reasons. The Nehru Report has now found a substitute and they say that if adult franchise is established then there is no need for reservation, but in the event of its not being established we want to have no doubt that in that case there should be reservations for Muslims in the Punjab and Bengal, according to their population, but they shall not be entitled to additional seats.” The third amendment was in regard to residuary powers which the Nehru Committee had vested in the Central Government. In moving his amendment that they should be lodged in the Provincial Government, Jinnah pleaded:

143

“This is purely a constitutional question and has nothing to do with the communal aspect. We strongly hold-I know Hindus will say Muslims are carried away by communal consideration-we strongly hold the view that, if you examin this question carefully, we submit that the residuary powers should rest with the province.” The fourth amendment was concerned with the separation of Sind. The Nehru Report had agreed to the separation of Sind but had subjected it to one proviso, namely, that the separation should come only on the establishment of the system of Government outlined in the Report. Jinnah in moving for the deletion of the proviso said: “We feel this difficulty… Suppose the Government choose, within the next six months, or a year or two, to separate Sind before the establishment of a Government under this constitution, are the Mahomedans to say, ‘we do not want it.’ So long this clause stands it’s meaning is that Mahomedans should oppose its separation until simultaneously a Government is established under this constitution. We say delete these words and I am supporting my argument by the fact that you do not make such a remark about the NWFP. The Committee says that it cannot accept it as the resolution records an agreement arrived at by parties who signed at Lucknow. With the utmost deference to the members of the Committee, I venture to say that that is not valid ground. Are we bound, in this Convention, bound because a particular resolution was passed by an agreement between certain persons?” Replying to his critics, Jinnah said: “Every country struggling for freedom and desirous of establishing a

144

democratic system of Government has had to face the problem of minorities wherever they existed, and no constitution, however, idealistic it may be, and however perfect from theoretical point of view it may seem, will ever receive the support of the minorities unless they can feel that they as an entity, are secured under the proposed constitution and Government, and whether the constitution will succeed or not must necessarily depend as a matter of acid test whether the minorities are in fact secure.” In response to Jinnah’s plea, Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru said: “…If you examine the figures, you will find that, including nominated members, Muslim representation in the Central Legislature is 27 per cent and Mr. Jinnah wants 33%… Speaking for myself, I would like you to picture Mr. Jinnah, whom I have known intimately for fifteen years. If he is a spoilt child, a naughty child, I am prepared to say, give him what he wants and be finished with it.” Mr. M.R. Jayakar, who was a spokesman of Hindu Mahasabha in the convention said: “I have also known Jinnah for last sixteen years in close association as a collegue in nationalist life and I can assure you that he comes before us today neither as a naughty boy nor as a spoilt child…One important fact to remember is that wellknown Muslims like the esteemed patriots Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Dr. Ansari, Sir Ali Imam, Raja Sahib of Mahmudabad and Dr. Kitchlew have given their full assent to the compromise embodied in the Nehru Committee Report. It is further to be borne in mind that even in the Muslim League, a large body of members have given their assent to the Nehru Committee Report.

145

Mr. Jinnah, therefore, represents, if I may say so without offence, a small minority of Muslims.” Jinnah, in his reply to the remarks of Sapru and Jayakar, said: “We are engaged today in a very serious and solemn transaction. We are here, as I understand, for the purpose of entering into a solemn contract and all parties who enter into it will have to work for it and fight for it together. What we want is that Hindus and Muslims should march together until our object is attained. Therefore, it is essential that you must get not only the Muslim League but the Musalmans of India and here I am not speaking as a Musalman but as an Indian… Would you be content with a few? Would you be content if I were to say, I am with you? Do you want or do you not want the Muslim India to go along with you? Minorities cannot give anything to majority. It is, therefore, no use asking me not to press for what you call “these small points.” I am not asking for these modifications because I am a naughty child.” If they are small points, why not concede? It is up to the majority, and majority alone can give. I am asking you for this adjustment because I think it is the best and fair to the Musalmans… We are all sons of this land. We have to live together. We have to work together and whatever our differences may be, let us at any rate not create more bad blood. If we cannot agree, let us at any rate agree to differ, but let us part as friends. Believe me there is no progress of India until the Musalmans and Hindus are united, and let no logic, philosophy or squabble stand in the way of coming to a compromise and nothing will make me more happy than to see a Hindu-Muslim union.”

146

(Jinnah of Pakistan: Stanley Wolpert, pg 100-101)

Among those who listened to Jinnah’s speech was a Parsee, Jamshed Nusserwanjee, who had become builder and the Mayor of Karachi recalled: “…The first time I saw Jinnah weep was after his amendments had been rejected at the Calcutta meeting to consider the Nehru Report… He was sadly humbled, and he went back to his hotel. About half-past eight next morning, he left Calcutta by train, and I went to see him off at the railway station. He was standing at the door of his first-class coupe compartment, and he took my hand. He had tears in his eyes as he said, Jamshed, this is the parting of the ways.”
(Jinnah: Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 95)

Dr. K.M.Munshi, in his book, “Pilgrimage to Freedom,” at pages 24-25 writes: “The Convention was kept waiting; then he (Jinnah) arrived, surrounded by leading members of the Muslim League, with the air of conquering hero, completely undermining the representative status of the whole convention. Jinnah in a truculent mood found fault with the Nehru Report; Jayakar expressed in no uncertain terms the indignation of the convention at being treated that way. Thus ended the communal harmony, which was one of the Nehru Reports outstanding achievements. Motilal Nehru issued a statement asking the Muslim League to enter into discussions regarding the amendments, which it had suggested to the Nehru Report, and to try to see whether some compromise could be achieved. Chagla wrote to Jinnah appealing to him to meet Motilal Nehru and also issued a press statement to that effect. The Pioneer, which was then a leading Newspaper, wrote an editorial

147

in its issue of 25th July 1929, captioned, ‘A great opportunity-Let Pandit Motilal Nehru and Jinnah meet’ and congratulating Chagla for making this suggestion. Jinnah in a letter of 5th August, 1929, wrote to Chagla: “I fear that the Hindu-Muslim question, as it is generally called, is not likely to be settled unless we all who are working for the freedom of India come to recognize it as a national problem and not a communal dispute. Unless the majority community and the leaders grasp that elementary principle and deal with it in that spirit, it will not be possible to get the minority community into line with any national programme.” On receipt of this letter, Chagla said: “As late as August 1929, Jinnah as was still a looking national upon the communal dispute really problem.

Undoubtedly, Jinnah’s attitude began to change from then on, though the final steps which converted him from the nationalist that he was into an unmistakable communalist came much later.” Chagla did not approve of the rejection by the Muslim League of the Nehru Report, and he resigned from the League on that issue. He published a pamphlet called Muslims and the Nehru Report, and carried on propaganda both in the press and from the platform for its acceptance. He contended that, even without the amendments, the Nehru Report was not prejudicial to the interests of the Muslim community, and was a great document, which served the national purpose of the country while safeguarding the rights of the minorities.
(Roses in December: M.C.Chagla, pg 97)

Mohammad Noman in his book, “Muslim India” from pages 289 to 292 says: “One thing about which

148

most of the League leaders were determined was to keep the Musalmans away from Motilal Nehru. The Musalmans had lost confidence in the bona fides of the Swarajist politicians. The Musalmans were convinced that after ten years, there will not be a single Muslim left in the Provincial Legislature. Muslims will become hewers of wood and drawers of water to their masters. There would be no difference between position that was accorded to the Irish Catholic by Statute of the Irish Parliament of 1695. The Nehru Report was the result of one-sided view of pandit Motilal Nehru and his Hindu myrmidons, so far as the Muslims of India were concerned. The chameleon-like attitude which Nehru assumed had not helped the cause which he had so much at heart, much less the greater, nobler and truer cause of our motherland. Nehru felt that to sustain his party only thing was to imbibe the new doctrines of communal nationalism and to do away with the separate electorates. The Nehru Report had become an eye-sore for the whole of the country. Not only did the Nehru Report deprive the communities, races and interests of India of their immemorial rights, it also produced a monster designated by the Central Government, which was to swallow provinces, Indian States, individual religious, racial rights, law, liberty and order, at one gulp. Never in India did such a document prepared by so many able men proved to be so howling failure. No event in the history of India created greater disunion than the publication of the Nehru Report. The Nehru Committee, at one stroke of pen, destroyed Muslims’ right of separate representation by substituting for it mixed electorates unaccompanied by any redeeming or compensating

149

features, knowing as it did that no Muslim who failed to placate the majority of Hindu electors could ever have a chance of success. Though a few carpet-knights, political malcontents from the Muslim camp were pressed into service to support the Nehru Report, the vast bulk of the thinking Musalmans saw through the game and realized that it was a scheme savouring of the Shuddhi and Sanghatan movement. It was pity that Pandit Nehru by short-sightedness fell into the trap of Mahasabha and thus, in the absence of the goodwill and cooperation of the Musalmans, gave a tremendous blow to the cause of India’s advance at the most critical moment in its history. The Musalmans had lost their faith in their Hindu brethren and no amount of pious fraud practiced in the name of nationalism could induce the Muslim minority to risk its existence by giving a blank cheque to the majority whose very superior maneuvers and dialectics alike failed to lull into sleep the great dangers that the Nehru Report aroused as to the intents and purposes of its authors. Instead of appreciating the point of view of minorities and safeguarding their legitimate interests, the Nehru Committee adopted measures which were calculated to dislodge them from every position of power and prestige.” The Congress passed the following resolution moved by Gandhi: “This Congress, having considered the constitution recommended by the All-Parties Committee Report, welcomes it as a great contribution towards the solution of its India’s political and communal whilst problems, to and the congratulates the committee on the virtual unanimity of recommendations and, adhering resolution relating to complete independence passed at

150

the Madras Congress approves of the constitution drawn up by the committee as a great step in poltical advance, especially as it represents the largest measure of agreement attained among the important parties in the country. “Subject to the exigencies of the political situation this country will adopt the constitution in its entirety if it is accepted by the British Parliament on or before 31 st December 1929, but in the event of its nonacceptance by that date or its earlier rejection, Congress will organize a non-violent non-cooperation by advising the country to refuse taxation or in such other manner as may be decided upon. Consistently with the above, nothing in this resolution shall interfere with the carrying on, in the name of the Congress, of the propaganda for complete independence.” Maulana Mahomed Ali, in his presidential address to the All-India Khilafat Conference held at Calcutta in 1928 said: “The Nehru Report had as its preamble admitted the bondage of servititude. Freedom and Dominion Status were widely divergent things.” Ali further said: “You make compromises but you in make your no constitution every day with false doctrines, immoral conceptions compromise and with wrong our ideas communalistswith sparate

electorates and reserved seats. 25% is our portion of population and yet you will not give us 33% in the Assembly. You are a Jew, a Bania. But to the English you give the status of your dominion. “The Conference passed the one line resolution: “The Conference declares once more that complete independence is our goal.”

151

Maulana Hasrat Mohani, as President of the Jamiat-ul-Ulema Conference held at Allahabad in 1931 condemmed the Nehru Report and said: “My political creed with regard to India is now well known to everybody. I cannot accept anything short of complete independence, and, that too, on the model of the United States of America or the Soviet Russia, which is essentially democratic, federal and centrifugal, and in which the rights of Muslim minorities are safeguarded. “For some time the Jamiat-ul-Ulema of Delhi held fast to the creed of complete independence and it was mostly for this reason that it repudiated the Nehru Report which devised a unitary constitution instead of a federal one. Besides, when, after the Lahore session, the Congress, at the instance of Mahatma Gandhi, declared the burial of the Nehru Report on the banks of the Ravi and the resolution of complete independence was unanimously agreed upon, the Delhi Jamiat ventured to cooperate with the Congress and its programs of civil disobedience simply because it was the duty of every Indian, Hindu or Muslim, to take part in the struggle for independence. “But unfortunately, Gandhi very soon went back upon his words and while yet in jail he told the British journalist Mr. Slocombe that by complete independence he meant only the substance of independence. Besides, when he was released on expressing his inclination for compromise he devised the illusory term of ‘Purna Swaraj’ in place of complete independence and openly declared that in ‘Purna Swaraj’ there was no place for severance of the British connection. By making secret

152

pact with Lord Irwin he definitely adopted the ideal of Dominion Status under the British Crown. “After this change of front by Gandhi, the Delhi Jamiat ought to have desisted from blindly supporting the Mahatma and like the Nehru Report it should have completely rejected this formula of the Congress Working Committee by which the Nehru Report was sought to be revived at Bombay. “But we do not know what unintelligible reasons induced the Delhi Jamiat-ul-Ulema to adopt ‘Purna Swaraj’ as their ideal, in spite of the knowledge that it does not mean complete independence but something even worst than complete independence. And the only explanation for adopting this creed is said to be that, although Gandhiji has accepted Dominon Status, he still insist that Britain should concede the right of secession from the British Empire to the Indians… Gandhiji and his followers know it full well that even if this right of secession is given to Indians, it would perhaps be never put into practice. “If someone considers this contention of mine to be based on suspicion and contends that the Congress will certainly declare for secession from the Empire whenever there is need of it, I will ask him to let me know what will be the form of Indian Government after the British connection is withdrawn. It is clear that no one can conceive of a despotic form and a democratic form, whether it would be unitary or federal but centripetal, will be nothing more than Hindu Raj, which the Musalmans can in no circumstances accept.” Hasrat Mohani concluded his address by saying: “We must, therefore, oppose Dominion Status in all

153

circumstances as this is not the half-way house or part of our ultimate aim, but its very negation and rival.” The U.P. Branch of the All India Muslim Conference in its session held at Cawnpore on 4th November 1928 passed the following resolution: “In the opinion of the All-Parties U.P. Muslim Conference, Musalmans of India stand for the goal of complete independence, which shall necessarily take the form of a federal republic.” Khan Bahadur Masoodul Hassan and some other persons opposed the resolution on the grounds that it would go against the best interests of Musalmans. Upon this, a number of women from their Purdah gallery sent a written statement to the president saying that if men had not the courage to stand for complete independence, women would come out of Purdah, and take their place in the struggle for independence.
(Pakistan or Partitrion of India by Dr.B.R. Ambedkar, pg 290)

Lord Irwin, the Viceroy, ultimately rejected the Nehru Report on the ground that constitution-making for India was the exclusive prerogative of the British Parliament. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad wrote epitaph on the convention and caustically remarked that the Muslims were fools to ask for safeguards and the Hindus were greater fools to refuse them. First Round Table Conference: In June 1929, Lord Irwin, the Viceroy went to England with a view to device some means whereby the constitutional question might be clarified, and a greater degree of cooperation could be obtained from all the

154

sections of Indian political opinion before the Parliament was asked to pronounce Reforms for India. Jinnah wrote a letter to the Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald on 19th June 1929, in which he said: “The present position is a very serious deadlock and if allowed to continue it will, in my opinion, prove disastrous both to the interest of India and Great Britain.” He then briefly outlined political events of the preceding few years, especially since the appointment of the Simon Commission and the futility of awaiting its report, saying: “So far as India is concerned, we have done with it. India has lost her faith in the word of Great Britain. The first and foremost thing that I would ask you to consider how best to restore that faith and revive the confidence of India in the ‘bona fides’ of Great Britain.” He warned that “there is a section in India that has already declared in favour of complete independence, and I may tell you without exaggeration that the movement for independence is gaining ground, as it is supported by the Indian National of such Congress.” a To diminish which the momentum movement, Jinnah

considered no less dangerous a threat to India’s security than did the Viceroy, he suggested as step one, a declaration “without delay” by His Majesty’s Government that “Great Britain is unequivocally pledge to the policy of granting to India full responsible Government with Dominion Status. The effect of such a declaration will be very far-reaching and go a great way to create a different atmosphere in the country.” As a practical action to implement such a declaration, he urged the Prime Minister “to invite representatives of India, who would be in a position to deliver goods (because completely

155

unanimous opinion in India is not possible at present) to London to meet with British officials till they could reach a constitutional “solution which might carry, to use the words of the Viceroy, the willing assent of the political India.” The proposals thus formulated could then be placed before Parliament. Ramsay MacDonald sent a private letter to Jinnah on 14th August in which he said: “The suggestions which you make in your letter will be pondered over with a desire to use them in every way that circumstances will allow. But one thing I can say here-because I have said it before repeatedly and it still remains the intention of the Government, that we want India to enjoy Dominion Status. There will probably be announcement made very soon regarding future proceedings.” Jinnah was very pleased and optimistically replied to the Prime Minister on 7th September, “If you carry out my suggestion with which I am glad to find that you are in accord, it will open up a bright future for India and the name of Great Britain will go down in history as one nation that was true to its declarations.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan: Stanley Wolpert, pp 107-108)

Lord Irwin returned to India and made the following declaration on 31st October 1929: “I am authorized on behalf of His Majesty’s Government to state clearly that in their judgment it is implicit in the declaration of 1917 that the natural issue if India’s constitutional progress, as contemplated, is the attainment of Dominion Status.” He also announced that A Round Table Conference of Indian and British representatives would be convened to consider the Simon

156

Commission’s Parliament.

Report

before

its

submission

to

Jinnah, in a joint statement welcomed Viceroy’s announcement as a fundamental change of procedure whereby the representatives of India will be invited to meet His Majesty’s Government in conference for the purpose of arriving at the greatest possible measure of agreement regarding the proposals to be submitted to the Parliament for the attainment of Dominion Status by India and thereby reaching a solution which might carry the willing assent of political India. The statement was signed, among others by Chimanlal Setalvad, Sarojini Naidu, Bhulabhai Desai, Sir Homy P. Mody, M.C. Chagla and Kanji Dwarkadas. In New Delhi, at a meeting chaired by Motilal Nehru, a policy of general conciliation was called for, together with the grant of general amnesty for political prisoners, and the predominant representation of the Indian National Congress at the forthcoming Round Table Conference. This leaders’ manifesto, as it came to be called, further insisted that the Round Table Conference is to meet not to discuss when Dominion Status is to be established but to frame a scheme of Dominion Constitution for India. No sooner did Jawaharlal sign that Manifesto he regretted doing so, and wanted to resign from the presidentship of Congress, which he had just accepted. Gandhi told Jawaharlal: “You must not resign…it will affect the national issue. There is no hurry and no principle is at stake. About the crown, no one else can wear it. It never was to be a crown of roses. Let it be all thorns now.” Nehru did not, in fact, resign, but his

157

emotional threat of resignation stiffened both Gandhi and Motilal in their resolve to stand by the leaders’ manifesto at the most they would be willing to do by way of “accommodating” the Viceroy and His Majesty’s Government. Irwin, however, had secured as much promise of change as Ramsay MacDonald was prepared to offer. Jinnah, therefore, found himself in the unenviable, yet not unfamiliar position, of having to try to bridge the gap remaining between both sides.
(Jinnah of Pakistan: Stanley Wolepert, pg 110)

Jinnah, Gandhi, Motilal, Sapru and Patel met Irwin on 23rd December 1929. Gandhi asked Irwin whether published the in interpretation the Congress of his announcement manifesto was leaders’

accurate. Gandhi explained that unless agreement was reached on this point he felt it fruitless to proceed to any other questions.” Irwin replied: “The object of the conference was to thrash out the problems which arose out of His Majesty’s Government’s definite declaration of policy… It would have the fullest opportunity to discuss any proposals put before it. The conference would be absolutely free... There would be no closure to the freest discussion; the conference would not, proceed to definite voting, but would rather follow the lines of the Imperial Conference, a record being kept of the general sense of the members.” Gandhi argued that unless the establishment of Dominion Status could be “presumed as an immediate result of the Conference,” he could not take part in it. He demanded complete freedom at once. Lord Irwin thought it unreasonable and looked to Jinnah and Sapru at this point for more effective

158

support. Both reasoned at some length with Gandhi and Motilal. They argued that those who went to the Conference would be at liberty to propose Dominion Status. Supposing from the opposite side somebody pointed out the difficulties, that would at least narrow the issues, and the true function of the Conference would be to discuss the difficulties in the way of immediate conferment of full Dominion Status and to argue about safeguards. Gandhi and Motilal refused to argue about issues unacceptable to all the parties with their divergent perspectives. Congress met in Lahore and passed a resolution demanding complete independence. Sunday, January 26, 1930, was proclaimed Purna Swaraj Day by the Congress Working Committee.” Jinnah blamed Gandhi for the sudden outburst of political hysteria. Sapru wrote to Jinnah on 5th January 1930: “…I entirely agree with you. The Congress has gone mad, but the worst of it is that in its madness it is going to involve the country in disaster. We must act and act together and with a determination that we will solve our differences. I have no doubt that on this occasion you can be of the greatest possible use to the country.” He assured Jinnah, “I personally think that we should not find it difficult to bring about a settlement of the Hindu Mohamedan question. But without flattering you I do say that it is impossible to get a settlement effected without your cooperation and guidance.” Jinnah agreed to give it a try, as did Shafi and Raja of Mamudabad. Hindu Maha Sabha leaders were also willing to join all parties’ conference, after much persuading and cajoling by Sapru. Jinnah selected most of the Muslim

159

representatives to the Conference in Delhi that met on 26th February 1930. More than fifty delegates were invited, including leading liberals, Mahasabhites, Christians, Anglo-Indians, and Madras Justice Party, “Untouchables,” as well as Muslim Leaguers. Early in February, Jinnah met Madan Mohan Malviya to discuss communal problem and felt the atmosphere has improved for possible settlement. Yet nothing had really changed since February 1928, except that Congress was not in attendance at the latest futile all parties conference.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan: Stanley Wolpert, pg 114)

On March 12, Gandhi accompanied by 78 persons made the historic march to Dandi to break the salt laws. The movement soon acquired the strength and speed of a revolution, causing considerable disquiet to the imperialists. “The spark having ignited,” wrote Prof. Brecher, “in a dramatic fashion, the explosion followed with devastating effect. The pent up emotions of thousands burst forth, and a nationwide violation of the Salt Law followed.” By the end of 1930, more than 90,000 men and women were swept into prison. The Government became panicky and hoped to stifle the popular movement by acts of savagery. The Government’s brutality towards the peaceful Satyagrahis repelled most people, including foreign observers. Webb Miller wrote a memorable description of the scene that unfolded before his eyes near the salt pans of Dharsana. The police attacked the “raisers” with such brutality that “the waiting crowd of watchers groaned and sucked in their breaths in sympathetic pain at every blow.”

160

The arrest of Gandhi on May 20, failed to calm down the convulsive movement, which gained greater strength on that account.
(M.R.Jayakar: V.B. Kulkarni, pg 175-177)

On

August

13,

Tej

Bahadur

Sapru

and

M.R.Jayakar had an interview with Gandhi in Yervada Jail to persuade him to attend the Round Table Conference. However, in spite of their best, they failed to convince Gandhi. George Slocombe, a special representative of “Daily Herald,” who interviewed Gandhi in Yervada jail writes: “Gandhi was prepared to suspend Civil Disobedience and advice cooperation with the Round Table Conference provided that the terms of reference of the Conference included the framing of a constitution giving India, “the substance of independence.” Commenting on Gandhi’s imprisonment, George Slocombe wrote: “The imprisonment of Mahatma now incarnates the very soul of India.” The first Round Table Conference, which was inaugurated in London on November 12, 1930, and was presided over by Prime Minister Ramsay Mac Donald had an unpropitious start. It began in the depressing climate of Congress rejection, countrywide unrest and an unsolved communal tangle. The issue before it was what would be the next step in India’s constitutional progress. But the most vital element in India’s political life, namely, the Congress, was not there, while the most essential ingredient of such a progress, namely communal settlement was a far cry. The invitees of the Conference were the Liberals and other elements not sympathetic to non-cooperation,

161

the representatives of organizations like the Sikhs, the Muslims, the Depressed classes and the others, those of commercial and industrial interests and Europeans, delegates from the Indian States and so on. The list of invitees was carefully made as if to advertise the fragmented nature of India’s political life rather than its basic unity. Jawaharlal Nehru dismissed the Conference as a stage-managed affair, which could yield no positive results. “It was,” he wrote, “fitting that in this assembly of vested interests-imperialists, feudal, financial, industrial, religious, communal- the leadership of the British Indian delegation should usually fall to the Aga Khan, who in his own person happened to combine all these interests in some degree.” Matlubul Hasan Saiyid in his book, “Mohamed Ali Jinnah,” at page 476 says: “Jawaharlal Nehru’s remarks regarding the delegates of the Round Table Conference were hardly befitting a man of his responsibility and public eminence specially in view of the fact that these very men had at that time probably contributed more to India’s welfare than what he himself had done. Patriotism is a virtue, which is not necessarily restricted to the members of the Indian National Congress, and such remarks were calculated to do more harm than good at that time.” It is interesting to know as to what Saiyid has said about Jawaharlal and his father Motilal. He says: “In fact, Jawaharlal Nehru’s election to the Congress presidentship was a main cause of the Congress refusal to cooperate with the Conference on the first occasion… At the end of Motilal Nehru’s term, the Congress had

162

elected Gandhi as the next president, but the later refused and suggested Jawaharlal’s name for the Lahore Congress and ultimately it became an accomplished fact. At this time the Congress was badly divided on the question of Round Table Conference. “A section of Congress,” says F.W.Wilson, “notably that led by Jawaharlal Nehru, the president designate, wished to try to force the Government to release all political prisoners, to give a pledge about Dominion Status and to show themselves willing to listen more attentively to the desires of the Indian people in the matter of day-to-day administration. It was pointed out to the Viceroy, and fully appreciated by him, that the promise of cooperation could most advantageously be coupled with certain concessions. Then occurred the debates in the Commons and in the Lords, and the fortunate speech of the late Lord Russell. Indian opinion, fickle as ever, began to veer round, with the result that there had to be another conference of Indian leaders at Allahabad to reconsider the Delhi manifesto, and discuss the whole situation. This again ended in a triumph for moderate opinion. It was decided to bring private pressure to bear upon the Viceroy, with regard to the question of political prisoners, but to proceed on the assumption that a plan of Round Table Conference was acceptable to Indian opinion. The constitutionalists in the congress party left this meeting overjoyed. Motilal Nehru had shown himself most conciliatory. Pandit Malviya was strong for cooperation. Gandhi himself was telling everybody that the Viceroy was a good man and that he was hoping for the best. Alone in that throng, Jawaharlal kept his counsel. He had tried to complicate matters at Delhi by insisting

163

upon

the

release

of

men

convicted

of

attempted

assassination. He had incurred a scathing rebuke from Gandhi and had been reduced to tears. Particularly, he did not like the new scheme and, as events proved, he was to be the real author of the coming sabotage. Just before Christmas, Jawaharlal conducted, as president, the proceedings of the All India Federation of the Trade Union at Nagpur. There he successfully led the revolt against the constitutionalists, and delivered an inaugural address which breathed class hatred and rampant communism. Then he returned to Allahabad for a day or two to prepare his speech for the Lahore session of the congress. The dates are important, as they convict Motilal and Gandhi of a deception, which is hard to forgive. Jawaharlal left for Lahore about the middle of December to get in touch with the local atmosphere, and to superintend for the Chriastmas week conference. Before he left, he showed to his father the draft of his speech as president-elect. Motilal Nehru told me (Matlubul Hasan Saiyid) it was not so extreme as he thought it was going to be. Its true nature would be seen later. Meanwhile, Gandhi was indulging in an orgy of moral doubts and typical hesitations, but he was in close touch with Motilal. Motilal on his part was keeping in close touch with Sapru, and one evening after the receipt of a communication from Gandhi, went to Sapru’s house, and with him drafted a telegram to the Viceroy asking for an interview to clarify certain matters. That evening he was talking brightly and harmoniously about the forthcoming visit to London. The Viceroy was due to return to Delhi on the early morning of 23rd December; and through Sir Malcolm hailey, wired to Sapru making an appointment

164

with Gandhi, Motilal, Patel, Jinnah and Sapru for the afternoon of 23rd. In the interval, Motilal followed his son to Lahore, and what happened there is a secret known only to the Congress leaders. The most obvious theory is that at Lahore Motilal saw quite clearly that there was going to be a majority in the Congress in support of independence, and against the acceptance of Round Table Conference. He saw that if Gandhi and he were to go there as Advocates of the cooperation, there would be a split in the Congress ranks, and the beloved son would find himself isolated, heading the extremists. He then had to make a rapid decision. If he allowed Congress to split, the moderates had triumphed, and the Viceroy’s policy was bound to be an overwhelming success. If he supported his son, the unity of Congress would be secured, its prestige in the eyes of the people would be enhanced, and the only fly in the ointment would be that he would have to break faith with Sapru and Lord Irwin. The only question was when it came to a tussel between his love for his son and his faith to his friend: what was going to be the question on which he would break? Gandhi and Motilal, who had been in close touch, and the conference arrived, the day before with their secret plan settled and ready for execution. Sapru and Jinnah arrived in high spirits, expecting that the afternoon conference would finally and definitely secure Congress support. Not even Speaker Patel was in the secret, and he too was optimistic. Mrs Naidu was present, cheerful and vivacious as ever, not knowing and having no inkling as to what was going to happen. Gandhi was enjoying one of his usual and convenient days of silence, and so no preliminary conference

165

between the Indians was possible. Motilal was observed to be distinctly distant and secretive, and after lunch the five men proceeded to see Lord Irwin. Gandhi began proceedings with perfunctory congratulatory statement about Viceroy’s escape from bomb blast. The Viceroy, who expected a reasonable sincere request for enlightenment, was so prepared to cooperate that he had actually brought with him a list of certain political prisoners, whose release he was willing to contemplate. Then the bombshell was thrown. Gandhi asked the Viceroy to give a pledge that the Round Table Conference would recommend nothing short of full Dominion Status, and that the British Government would honor such a pledge. The Viceroy, to put it mildly, was flabbergasted. Sapru, Patel and Jinnah felt themselves betrayed and could not believe their ears. Gandhi and Motilal were rude to their collegues and rude to the Viceroy. They had determined to force a break, and spared no pains to succeed… But Gandhi and Motilal have denied the substance of this interview. But it is, I, (Matlubul Hasan Saiyid) maintained an accurate representation of what took place and is based on the notes of the conversation, which were taken down during the meeting by the Viceroy’s Private Secretary. The official record still exists. Unusual care was taken to see that Mr. Cunnigham’s notes agreed with the recollection of those present, and his original draft was amended and expanded in at least one instant, of which I (M.Hasan) have personal knowledge. Gandhi and Motilal retired from this interview armed with a fresh grievance against the Government. Motilal had escaped from the unwelcome shackles of the moderates. He had betrayed his friend and ally Sapru

166

and could go to Lahore surrounded with a halo of moderation, but also decorated with a garland of Congress patriotism. Gandhi, too, had found a way out from an association, which would circumscribe his personal prestige and opportunities for personal popularity. The two Congress leaders hastened to give their version to the public. In their view the offer of the British Government was not sincere. It meant nothing. It was merely beating about the bush. Gandhi said that he had given the British Government a year to show itself amenable to reason, and prepared to accept Dominion Status according to the Nehru Report model. He had waited the whole year, he said, expecting some gesture, some evidence of sincerity. He could find nothing substantial in the Viceregal Declaration, nothing satisfactory in his conversations with Lord Irwin. He then proceeded to weep buckets of crocodile tears, and to lament that if something satisfactory did not happen before midnight of 31st December, he would with extreme reluctance, and after a Gethsemane of prayer and fasting, wake up on January 1st a convinced believer in independence. Jawaharlal was thus saved from political isolation, when, after a few months, Motilal died and the Congress leadership passed on to Sardar Patel, Gandhi found the horizon clear to pursue his line of action, at the cost of the prestige and honor of the Indian National Congress and recommended the Gandhi-Irwin Pact to his followers in the following terms: “If the Congress succeeds in making its position acceptable to the Conference, then I claim that the fruit of that effort will be complete independence. But I know

167

that the way to it is weary. There are many rocks, many pitfalls to be found across the way. But if Congressmen will approach the new task to which they are called with confidence and courage, I have no misgivings about the result. It is, therefore, in their hands either to make something noble and worth looking at out of the new opportunity that has come to them, or, by lack of selfconfidence and want of courage, to fritter away the opportunity. But I know that in this task Congressmen will require the aid of the other parties, the aid of the great princes of India, and last, but by no means the least, the aid of Englishmen. I need not make any appeal at the present juncture to the different parties. I have little doubt that they are no less eager than Congressmen for the real freedom of their country.”
(Mohammad Ali Jinnah: Matlubul Hasan Saiyid, pg 485-492)

Jinnah, as spokesman for the sixteen Muslim delegates said: “…I am glad, Mr. President (MacDonald), that you referred to the fact that the declarations made by British sovereigns and statesmen from time to time that Great Britain’s work in India was to prepare her for self-Government have been plain. But I must emphasize that India now expects translation and fulfillment of these declarations into action.” In conclusion, Jinnah said: “I must express my pleasure at the presence of the Dominion Prime Ministers and representatives. I am glad that they are here to witness the birth of a new Dominion of India, which would be ready to march along with them within the British Commonwealth of Nations.” Jinnah again addressed the conference on 20th November in which he said: “I have no hesitation in conceding this position-that you (Great Britain) have a

168

great interest in India, both commercial and political, and therefore you are a party, if I may say so, gravely interested in the future constitution of India. But I want you equally to concede that we have a greater and far more vital interest than you have, because you have the financial and commercial interest, and the political interest, but to us it is all in all.” And as to the question of parties, Jinnah stated that “There are four main parties sitting round the table now. There are the British party, the Indian princes, the Hindus and the Muslims.” He warned that unless the Round Table negotiated a settlement to satisfy the aspirations of India then the seventy million Muslims and all others who had kept aloof might be tempted to join the non-cooperation movement. Jinnah then stated that: “India wants to be mistress in her own house; and I cannot conceive of any constitution that you may frame which will not transfer responsibility in the Central Government to a Cabinet responsible to the Legislature. It was the least that would now suffice to satisfy political leaders through out the subcontinent, those who came to London, as well as those who had remained in British India’s crowded prison cells.” He reminded MacDonald that two years earlier, he had said: “I hope that within a period of months, rather than years, there will be a new Dominion of another race, a Dominion that will find self-respect as an equal within the Commonwealth-I refer to India.” After the plenary session, the conference divided itself into several committees to go into details. The Federal Structure Committee framed a federation scheme, the other committees made a number of recommendations, for example, the abolition of Dyarchy

169

and so on. The results produced by these committees were discussed at the Conference. But it was in the Minorities Committee that the deadlock occurred. In that it was agreed on principle that the proposed new constitution must assure the minorities that their interests would be safeguarded. Beyond this it was found difficult to make any further headway. The Muslims and the Sikhs demanded safeguards. Even the Depressed Classes asserted their separate electoral identity. Jinnah and Shafi insisted on communal safeguards as a condition precedent to the working of any constitution to be framed. Their stand was, “Either Jinnah’s 14 points or none of any responsible constitution devoid of British control.” These were the only possible alternatives present in their thought. On 4th January 1931, the Aga Khan, Jinnah and Shafi called on Ramsay MacDonald to warn him that, “unless his statement of the Government’s policy is accompanied by an announcement of satisfactory safeguards for the communities, most of the Muslim delegates will dissociate themselves from the findings of the conference.” Ramsay MacDonald tried to win greater cooperation from Jinnah during the conference by casually remarking to him in the course of conversation that in view of the forthcoming changes in India the British Government would be looking for distinguished Indians for appointment as Provincial Governors. The obvious implication of this suggestion was that Jinnah would have an excellent chance if he proved to be a good boy. Jinnah at once made it clear to Ramsay MacDonald that his services were not available for sale and firmly

170

rejected the offer, which he believed was nothing less than an attempt to bribe him.
(Jinnah of Pakistan: Stanley Wolpert, pg 123-125)

In summing up his speech the Prime Minister made the following major points: (a) The Government’s view was that responsibility should be placed upon the Legislature both Central and Provincial, subject to certain safeguards; (b) The Government took note of the unanimous recommendation about federation; (c) Regarding the minorities problem it was the duty of the communities to come to an agreement among themselves; (d) Those who engaged in civil disobedience would response to the Viceroy’s appeal made in the Central Assembly and thus turn their attention to co-operative work. The Conference adjourned on 9th January 1931, until the following 7th September. Samuel Hoare in his book, “Nine Troubled Decades,” writes: “Jinnah intermittently took prominent part in the debates, but many of us could never follow the movements of his volatile mind. He never seemed to wish to work with anyone. Was he in favour of All-India Federation? We could not tell for certain, though it is worth remembering that he then never suggested the division of India and the creation of Pakistan.Was he in favour of provincial autonomy without change in the center? Sometimes, he gave us the impression that he did not wish to go beyond provincial autonomy, and at other times that he demanded responsible Government

171

both in the center and provinces. It was this illusiveness that made it difficult for us to cooperate with him, or for him to give any clear lead to his Muslim collegues.” British reactionaries were, however, dead set on conceding nothing to Indians. Long before the conference was convened, Winston Churchill had declared: “Sooner or later you will have to crush Gandhi and the Indian Congress and all they stand for.” In December, when the London conference was still in session, he said: “The British nation has no intention whatever to relinquishing control of Indian life and progress… We have no intention of casting away the most truly bright and precious jewel in the Crown of the King, which, more than all our Dominions and dependencies, constitutes the glory and strength of the British Empire.”
(M.R. Jayakar: V.B. Kulkarni, pg 197-198)

Ramsay MacDonald, the Labour Prime Minister, was non-commital. For him also, India was too great a prize to be lost. Besides, the Labour Ministry was not prepared to incur Tory antagonism by pursuing a progressive India policy. “If,” writes H.N. Brailsford, “Mr. MacDonald had then given publicly the pledge which Mr. Gandhi sought, it is probable that both the opposition parties could have repudiated it and brought his Government down.” The communal bigots supported the British reactionaries in ensuring the emptiness of the deliberations.
(M.R. Jayakar: V.B.Kulkarni, pg 198)

Second Round Table Conference: On 25th January 1931, Gandhi and the members of the Congress Working Committee with several other Congress leaders were released from jail. Motilal Nehru

172

immediately called a conference in Allahabad, which decided that Gandhi should call on the Viceroy. Accordingly, Gandhi met Lord Irwin in Delhi. The Gandhi-Irwin parleys began on the afternoon of 17th February 1931. On 4th March an agreement was reached, which came to be known as Gandhi-Irwin Pact. The important terms of the pact were as follows: A. On behalf of the Congress Gandhi agreed’ 1. To suspend the Civil Disobedience movement. 2. To participate in the forthcoming second Round Table Conference for drafting a constitution for India on the basis and of (c) (a) Federation (b) and Responsibility interest of India. B. On behalf of the Government the Viceroy agreed 1. To release all prisoners of non-violent activities; 2. To withdraw the Emergency Ordinances; 3. To permit people who live within certain distance of the seashores to collect or manufacture salt free of duty. Jawaharlal Nehru took the pact as a surrender. He in his autobiography at page 258 said: “Was it for this that our people had behaved so gallantly for a year? Were all our brave words and deeds to end in this?” A special session of the Congress was held in March 1931 at Karachi under the presidentship of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel to ratify Gandhi-Irwin Pact. Gandhi made a speech in which he said that he would refuse to go to London, if he failed to solve the communal question in India. “I do not guarantee,” he said, “that we will come Adjustments

safeguards that may be necessary in the

173

back with Swaraj, but I guarantee that we will not return with slavery.” Gandhi-Irwin Pact was ultimately ratified. It was agreed that the Congress would participate in the Second Round Table Conference and that its sole representative would be Gandhi. Jinnah had returned to India for a few days prior to the Second Round Table Conference. In a speech at Bombay, he expressed that the present age is an age of organization and unless the Muslims organize themselves there was no solution for them. He was glad, however, to observe that members of his community were waking up and that there was great activity among them. “I am an Indian first and a Muslim afterwards,” he said, “But at the same time I agree that no Indian can ever serve his country, if he neglects the interests of the Muslims, because it is by making Muslims strong, by bringing them together, by encouraging them and by making them useful citizens of the State that you will be able to serve your country. What is a State? What is representative Government? Does it mean that the seventy million Muslims should be tied hand and foot in a constitution where a particular class of Hindus can possibly tyrannize over and deal with them as Is they like? Is that representative Government? that democratic

Government? Certainly not.” Remarking on the future constitution of India, he emphatically declared that no Government of any country could succeed by keeping the minorities under bondage and perpetual subjugation. Similarly nobody could hope to make India strong by suppressing the vital interests and political aspirations of Muslims and untouchables, and people trying to indulge

174

in such manoevres were only leading India to a weak and degrading position from which it would be hard for her to recover. I said this openly. I have no eye on any party. I have no mind for popularity. I can tell you honestly that the Hindus are foolish, utterly foolish in the attitude that they have adopted today. The bulk of the Hindus have lost their heads and their mentality, perhaps you may not know, I know it. I assure that unless Hindus will have the courage and confidence-they are afraid of Muslims-this India will never get Swaraj. It is not the joint or separate electorates or five or ten seats. Hindus have not necessary courage. In the Punjab and Bengal, Hindus were refusing to give Muslims a statutory majority. I like straight play. Tell me that I do not want to give you a majority in the Punjab and Bengal. Hindus do not say that. They say, you can have a majority with joint electorates. Hindus know perfectly well that Muslims have got only 40% of voters in these provinces.” Jinnah continued that unless certain reasonable safeguards and brakes were provided for the purpose of preventing any undue mischief, the constitution would not work. On the eve of his departure for London, a representative of the “Times of India,” Bombay approached Jinnah in order to know his views about the forthcoming Round Table Conference. Jinnah told the representative: The success or the failure of the Round Table Conference of is the entirely dependent on the The consideration Hindu-Muslim question…

question of the future constitution of India is stupendous and one feels there are rocks ahead, but given goodwill and determination, we may yet find a solution which will bring peace and prosperity to the people of India.” He

175

further told: “I am not likely to return for a considerable long time. Nevertheless, India’s welfare and her future progress will be certainly nearest my heart. I shall spare no efforts to serve India.” The Second Round Table Conference began on 7th September 1931. Gandhi, the sole delegate of the Congress arrived in London on 12th September and remained in London till 5th December. All eyes were on Gandhi, for his was the voice of Congress on every committee as well as at the plenary session where he spoke. Jinnah felt gloomy about the conference and its prospects, as he told his journalist friend Durga Das, at lunch in Simpson’s: “What can you expect from a jamboree of this kind? The British will only make an exhibition of our difference.” He anticipated that nothing would come of Gandhi’s appearance on the scene, predicting that the British will make a fool of him, and he will make a fool of them and asking, where is the Congress claim that it represents the Muslims as well? I expect nothing to come out of this conference.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 128)

Soon

after

the

conference

commenced

its

business, it was found that the representatives of the various communities had concluded a pact among themselves demanding representation for minorities in the proposed federal and provincial legislatures. Gandhi protested and urged that the conference had assembled mainly for the purpose of drawing up an All-India Constitution and that priority should be given to the main object of the conference. He argued that the communal issue should be tackled later, after the basic

176

issues had been resolved. But, no heed was paid to his protest. Ramsay MacDonald retorted that the Minorities Pact represented the considered opinion of the representatives of 115 millions of people of India and therefore the British Government was bound to give serious attention to it. He also administered a mild rebuke to Gandhi telling him that his attitude on the communal question was hampering the progress of Constitution-making.
(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 142)

The Federal Structure Committee met from 2-27 September under Lord Sankey’s Chairmanship. The next day the Minorities Committee was reconvened by Ramsay MacDonald, with Gandhi joining the ranks; it met till 18th November, ten days after which the entire conference gathered again in St. Jame’s Palace in plenary session. Lord Sankey reported that his committee had concluded its lengthy deliberations with the hope that an All-India Federation was possible. However, Jinnah insisted: “I am still of the opinion that the achievement and completion of the scheme of All-India Federation must, with the best will in the world, take many years. No outstanding vital ingredient of the scheme has yet been agreed upon.” He urged the British Government to give Provincial Autonomy without delay simultaneously with responsibility at the Centre in British India. He further advised Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald to decide communal question provisionally. He said: “If the British Government settle the communal question and make a substantial advance towards real responsibility at the Centre in British India, both Hindus and Muslims will realize the earnestness on the part of the

177

Government and the bulk of the people will accept their decision.” Gandhi was last to address the conference on 1st December. He said: “All the other parties at this meeting represent sectional interests. Congress alone claims to represent the whole of India and all interests. It is no communal organization; it is a determined enemy of communalism in any shape or form. And yet here I see that the Congress is treated as one of the parties. I wish I could convince all the British public men, the British Ministers, that the Congress is capable of delivering the goods. The Congress is the only All-India wide national organization, bereft of any communal basis. Believe me that Muslim problem exists here, and I repeat, that without the problem of minorities being solved there is no Swaraj for India, there is no freedom for India… But I do not despair of some day or other finding a real and living solution in connection with the minorities’ problem. I repeat so long as the wedge in the shape of foreign rule divides community from community and class from class, there will be no living solution, there will be no living friendship between these communities… Were Hindus and Musalmans and Sikhs always at war with one another when there was no British rule, when there was no English face seen there? This quarrel is not old; this quarrel is coeval with the acute shame. I dare to say it is coeval with the British advent.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 128)

Gandhi put forward the suggestion that the Minorities’ Sub Committee be adjourned Sine Die and the fundamentals of the constitution be hammered into shape as quickly as may be. Meanwhile, the informal

178

work of discovering a true solution of the communal problem will and must continue; only it must not baulk or be allowed to block the progress of constitutionmaking. Attention must be diverted from it and concentrated on the main part of the structure. The Prime Minister, in his concluding observations said: “…The British Government wants to go on; the British Government wants you to go on. The British Government will take its action if you cannot go on to an end, because we are determined to make such improvements in the Government of India as will make the Government of India something that is capable of greater and greater expansion towards liberty. That is what we want. I appeal to the Delegates here todayDelegates representing all communities-do not stand in our way; because that is what happening.” Acting on the suggestion of the Prime Minister, the minorities met to consider if they could produce a settlement. They produced a settlement which was submitted to the Prime Minister before the next meeting of the Minorities Committee, which took place on 13th November 1931. In his opening remarks, the Prime Minister said: “The work of this committee, was from the very beginning of supreme importance, and I am sorry that you have been unable to present to us an agreed plan. “Last night, however, I received a deputation representing the Mohammedans, the Depressed Classes, a section of the Indian Christians, the Anglo-Indians and the British community. They came with a document, which embodied an agreement that they had come to amongst themselves. They informed me, that it covered

179

something in the region of 46% of the population of British India. “I think the best thing would be, to treat this document as a document, which is official to the records of this committee and in order that may be done I shall ask His Highness The Aga Khan formally to present it here, so that it may be entered in our official record.” His Highness The Aga Khan then got up and said: “Mr. Prime Minister, on behalf of the Muhammedans, the Depressed Classes, the Anglo-Indians, the Europeans and a considerable section of Indian Christian groups, I present the document embodying the agreement which has been arrived at between them with regard to the inter-communal problem with which the Round Table Conference in general and the Minorities Committee in particular are concerned. We desire to make it clear that this agreement has been arrived at after careful and anxious consideration of this difficult and complicated problem and must be taken as a whole. All parts of the agreement stand or fall as a whole.” This document was known as the “Minorities Pact.” In the general discussion that followed, Gandhi said: “I would like to repeat what I said before, that, while the Congress will always accept any solution that may be acceptable to the Hindus, the Muhammedans and the Sikhs, the Congress will be no party to the special electorates for any other minorities.” At the plenary session on the 1st December 1931, the Prime Minister announced the decision that the North-West Frontier Province should be constituted a separate province, and that Sind should be constituted a

180

separate province, if satisfactory means of financing could be found. Regarding the main problem of constitutional progress of India, the Second Round Table Conference did not, on the whole, advance the matter much further beyond where it was left by the first Round Table Conference. M.R.Jayakar says: “Jinnah, whose political stock rose beyond all recognition, played an evasive and enigmatic part in its proceedings. Asked why he did not cooperate with Gandhi, and Sapru to promote communal unity, he replied that his attempts would have failed because of the opposition of Mian-Fazl-I-Husain and the Aga Khan. In later years, it was revealed in the Legislative Assembly that the Aga Khan, who had played a decisive role to bring the Round Table Conference to a deadlock, had asked to be raised to the status of a ruling prince in India by ceding some territory to him as a reward for his destructive role at he Round Table Conference.
(M.R. Jayakar by V.B.Kulkarni, pg 204)

Gandhi left London in friendly mood. He had arranged to visit Rome on his return journey, not to see Mussolini but to see Signora Montessori, the woman Pope of Educational Reforms. In Rome the usual crowd of admirers gathered around him. In the ship that took him to India from Italy, Gandhi heard a wireless message from Rome describing a fictitious interview that he was said to have given to Gayada of GIORNALE D’ ITALIA. According to this Gandhi had made the following declaration:

181

“The Round Table Conference has been for the Indians a long and slow agony. It has, however, served to make quite clear the spirit of the Indian Nation and of its leaders, and to unmask the true intentions of England, which was to take the form of passive resistance and the boycott of British goods. He considered that the boycott would prove a powerful means of rendering more acute the British crisis already difficult through the devaluation of the currency and unemployment.” When Samuel Hoare heard a report of the interview, he telegraphed Gandhi for its confirmation. Gandhi replied that he had made no such statement and that the reported interview was a fake. After receipt of Gandhi’s reply, Hoare said: “While the disclaimer brought me great relief, the harm was unfortunately done. The lie like caumny in Don Basilios famous song in the Barber of Seville, had already spread over the world, and had been accepted in London and Delhi as clear proof of Gandhi’s irreconciliable opposition. “We always told you so,” said the diahard critics. “We always know that he was our bitterest enemy.”
(Nine Troubled Years: Templewood, pg 65)

Communal Award: On 17th August 1932, Ramsay MacDonald announced the Communal Award simultaneously from London and Simla. As a background to it, a Government communiqué stated: “The Minorities Committee had failed to solve the communal problem at the Round Table Conference. The Prime Minister had offered to give an award himself, but this was not unanimously acceptable to the members. In the final plenary session therefore, he declared that, in view of the RTC members’ continued

182

failure to bring about a communal settlement, the Government might have to frame and provide one.” The electorates Communal for Muslims, Award accorded Sikhs, separate Indian Europeans,

Christians and Anglo-Indians. Seats were reserved for Marathas in certain selected general constituencies in Bombay. The Depressed Classes were given seats which were to be filled by election from special constituencies in which they alone could vote, though they were entitled to vote also in the general constituencies. A number of seats, also communally divided, were allotted to women. Special seats were allotted to labour, commerce and industry, mining and planting, and landlords. Dr. K.M.Munshi, in his “Pilgrimage to Freedom” at pages 34 and 35 writes: “Months later an interesting development took place, which could have had great possibilities, had we been gifted with miraculous foresight. Jinnah apparently got wind of our Council entry Programme, and told me in the Bar Library of the Bombay High Court: ‘You will join me and let us jointly prepare our case against the White Paper. Let us accept the Communal Award so that even the Muslims will come round.’” Munshi further writes: “Pursuant to our talk, Jinnah invited Sarojini Naidu, Bhulabhai Desai, the eminent lawyer, K.F.Nariman, the then President of the Bombay Provincial Congress Committee, S.A. Brelvi, Editor of ‘Bombay Chronicle,’ Mathuradas Tricumdas, Gandhiji’s nephew and an influential Congressman of Bombay, and me. We met twice. On the first occasion we just talked about things in general. On the second occasion Bhulabhai could not come, and Mathuradas

183

and myself, the only persons to attend, made it clear that we could not support the Communal Award. We met again in Sarojini Naidu’s room in Taj Mahal Hotel, but Jinnah was not present; Bhulabhai agreed with us. We decided to drop the matter.” Gandhi, who had earlier declared that he would resist the grant of separate electorates to the Depressed Classes even with his life, announced his determination to fast until the Award was modified so far as it concerned the Depressed Classes. The fast, which was termed as Epic Fast commenced in the Yervada Jail on 20th September 1932, creating a heart-breaking situation. An entire nation was in agony. A most precious life was at stake. The Hindu leaders met in Bombay under the presidentship of Madan Mohan Malviya. The Depressed Classes leaders headed by Dr. B.R.Ambedkar were consulted. There was a prolonged conference in Yervada jail among the Hindu and Depressed Classes leaders. The leaders, ultimately came to an agreement, which came to be known as “Poona Pact.” A cable was sent to the Prime Minister requesting him to withdraw the separate electorates decision for the Depressed Classes. The British Government having accepted the Poona Pact on 26th September, Gandhi broke his fast to the great relief of his countrymen. The Communal Award assured Muslims some 51% of the legislative seats in the Punjab, and just under 50% in Bengal, where special interest Europeans would hold the balance of power, retaining separate electorates and Muslim representation in excess of total population proportions in all Hindu majority provinces. Jinnah decides to settle in London:

184

It seems that by the end of the second Round Table Conference, Jinnah had retired into a state of stubbornness and eclipse. He was not included in the third Round Table Conference, which began on 17th November 1932 and dispersed on 24th December. He was depressed and chose not to return to India. He told a Muslim student in Oxford: “The Hindus are short-sighted and I think incorrigible. The Muslim camp is full of spineless people who will consult the Deputy Commissioner about what they should do. Where, between these two groups, is any place for a man like me.” Abandoning all other interests, he decided to make his home in London and to practise at the Privy Council Bar. He bought a three-storied West Heath House in West Heath Road from Lady Graham Wood. In September 1931, he took possession of the house. His sister Fatima joined him. His thirteen year old daughter Dina, entered in an English boarding school, spent her holidays with them. His practice was flourishing. It was said that he wanted to become a Labour member of the House of Commons, so that he could fight India’s battles in Westminster, as Dadabhai Naoroji had fought them before. At the time of his death in 1948, the Sunday Chronicle (Manchester) recalled that Jinnah had addressed the Selection Committee of the Yorkshire divisional Labour Party, but was turned down because of his immaculate dress. “We do not want a toff like that,” one of the Labour men remarked. There is no proof in any letters, nor any records in the archives of the Trade Union Congress to support this story; nor did Jinnah ever refer to such a wish in his subsequent speeches. There is only a report in the

185

Yorkshire Post, of April 1932, of a speech which he made to the members of the Leeds Luncheon Club, to whom he said: “If the British people wish to bring peace and good-will in India, its best policy would be to introduce at once a bill giving India self-government, and to leave out the idea of a federation of all India…the federation is a golden illusion, a mirage, to my mind…”
(Jinnah-Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 100)

Jinnah’s life was now dignified and secure: his fortune was growing and he could enjoy the pleasant luxuries he had learned to accept- carefully chosen dinners at the Carlton Grill, and talks with calm, intelligent lawyers, in the still security of their London clubs. Also, enjoyed the constant companionship of his sister, Miss Fatima Jinnah, who had resigned from her work in Bombay, to travel to England and be with her brother. From this time to his death, she abandoned all other interests, to his care, and his career. On Saturdays and Sundays, Jinnah liked to walk across Hampstead Heath to Kenwood-past jack Straw’s Castle, the inn before which Karl Marx used to sit during his exile, drinking ginger beer with his children. Jinnah seemed to enjoy leisure, for the first time in his life. These were Jinnah’s years of order and contemplation, wedged in between the time of early struggle, and the final storm of conquest. One morning in November 1932, Jinnah read a review of H.C.Armstrong’s Grey Wolf, An Intimate Study of a Dictator, in the Literary Supplement of the ‘Times.’ After breakfast he walked-past the pond and down the hill at Hampstead-and bought a copy of the book. Jinnah read of Mustafa Kemal in the full flood-

186

light of his great prestige, high up alone on a pinnacle of greatness. It would not have occurred to him that he was to enjoy similar prestige and eminence, and achieve them, not by ordering two thousand of his cavalry to advance towards the English lines, but with the lone sword of his own argument, over a conference table.
(Jinnah-Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 102 - 103)

In Cambridge a pamphlet was published in 1932, written by 35 year old Muslim student from the Punjab, Choudhary Rahmat Ali. “Now or Never” was its title; it was subtitled “Are we to live or perish for ever? Rahmat Ali identified himself as Founder of the Pakistan National Movement and named three associates, also Cambridge students, Mohmmad Aslam Khan, Sheik Mohammad Sadiq, and Inayat Ullah Khan, who apparently contributed to the contents of the pamphlet, which first publicized the name, “Pakistan.” Rahmat Ali’s proposed solution of the great Hindu-Muslim problem was written on behalf of the thirty million Muslims of PAKISTAN, who live in the five Northern Units of India-Punjab, N.W.F.P., Kashmir, Sind, and Baluchistan, embodying their inexorable demand for the recognition of their separate national status as distinct from the rest of India. Rahmat Ali and his associates insisted that their plan was basically different from the suggestion put forward by Dr. Sir Mohammad Iqbal, whose Northwest unit was to have remained within an all India federation, by insisting: “These provinces should have a separate Federation of their own. There can be no peace and tranquility in the land if we, the Muslims, are duped into Hindu-dominated Federation where we cannot be the masters of our own destiny and captains of our own souls.”

187

Sir Reginald Craddock, appointed to Linlithgow’s Joint Committee on Indian Constitutional Reforms, also knew about the Pakistan idea by 1st August 1933, when he asked Abdullah Yusuf Ali, of the North-West Frontier Province, “whether there is a scheme for Federation of Provinces under the name of Pakistan?” Yusuf Ali’s answer was: “As far as I know, it is only a student’s scheme; no responsible people have put it forward.” Sir Reginald was more sanguine about its prospects, however, stating: “They have not so far, but …You have advanced very quickly in India, and it may be, when those students grow up it will be put forward; that scheme must be in the minds of the people anyhow.” Mr Zafrulla Khan, who became Pakistan’s Foreign Minister, had never heard of the word or movement. Mr Isaac Foot, a Liberal member of Parliament asked. “What is Pakistan?” To this Yusuf Ali, who served as a spokesman for the joint five-member Muslim delegation of the Muslim League and the All-India Muslim Conference to the Parliamentary Committee, replied: “So far we have considered it, we have considered it chimerical and impracticable. It means the Federation of certain provinces.” Yet Reginald was not willing to drop this “chimerical” subject, pressing on with, “I have received communications about the proposal of forming a Federation of certain Muslim States under the name of Pakistan.” Another member of the Muslim deputation, Dr. Khlifa Shujauddin, insisted, “Perhaps it will be enough to say that no such scheme has been considered by any representative gentlemen or association so far.” If Jinnah knew about the Pakistan scheme at this date, there was no indication in his papers of such

188

knowledge or of any personal interest expressed in it. Nor would he agree to meet with Rahmat Ali the following year, despite several attempts by the latter to discuss his idea with Jinnah in London, nor was Jinnah willing as yet to accept the Muslim League’s invitation to return to India to preside over its annual deliberations in Delhi in April 1933. “I cannot return to India before December next,” he replied to the telegraphic invitation from Abdul Matin Choudhary in March. In his reply he further said: “Besides I do not see what I can do there at present. You very rightly suggest that I should enter the Assembly. But is there much hope in doing anything there? There are questions which still make me feel that there is no room for my services in India. Yet I am sorry to repeat, but there is no chance of doing anything to save India till the Hindus realize the true position… The Hindus are being fooled…by chance any scheme goes through, it will be worse than what is at present… Thank you for your suggestion that I should try and stand for election as Sir Ibrahim Rahimtoola is going to resign. Well I cannot say till I come to India as I am due in December, at any rate for a few months.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 131-133)

In July 1933, Liaquat Ali Khan and his beautiful Brahmin wife arrived in London on their honeymoon. Jinnah invited them for dinner at his Hampstead house. After dinner Liaquat Ali urged Jinnah: “You must come back. The people need you. You alone can put new life into the League and save it.” Begum Liaquat also made an appeal. Jinnah listened to Liaquat and his wife and in the end said: “You go back and survey the situation; test the feelings of all parts of the country. I trust your

189

judgment. If you say, “Come back,” I will give up my life here and return.” Liaquat did as he was told. He amassed his evidence, talked to hundred people and only when he was convinced, he sent a message to Jinnah to return. Jinnah returned to Bombay in 1934. One evening he met Diwan Chamanlal at the Willington Club and told him: “Politics! I am finished. But if you could only get six persons like you to support me, I would come back.” Diwan Chamanlal sent telegrams to six of the honest and stalwart ones, asking them if they would support Jinnah if he returned. They all replied “Yes.” He already had the whole-hearted devotion of Liaquat Ali Khan, to encourage these encouraging signs. Jinnah returned to England again and gave up his practice before the Privy Council; he sold his house at Hampstead and he came home to Bombay. Mr. T.W.Ramsay, who was Jinnah’s neighbour in King’s Bench Walk described their farewell thus; “I remember the day when he came in and said he was returning home. Several other lawyers had their eye on his beautiful office furniture and they wished to buy it. There were some lovely mahogany pieces. One of my collegues said to Jinnah that he would buy it all, but he answered, ‘it is yours’ I do not care about these chattels. I am going on a grand mission to India.”
(Jinnah-Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 106)

Permanent President of Muslim League: In April 1934, the Muslim League unanimously made Jinnah its permanent President. In October, while still in England, he was elected to the Indian Legislative Assembly, unopposed from the Muslim constituency of

190

Bombay. He came to India in January, 1935 to attend the first session of the Assembly. In February, he moved an amendment in the debate on the Indian constitutional reform. His three-part amendment was to accept the Communal Award segment of the White Paper until a substitute is agreed upon by various communities concerned; to urge the removal of objectionable features from the provincial government section, particularly the establishment of Second Chambers, the extraordinary and special powers of the Governors, provision relating to police rules, Secret Service and Intelligence Departments, which render the real control and responsibility of the Executive and Legislature ineffective; and to reject the all-India federation scheme proposed for the center as a thoroughly rotten, fundamentally bad and totally unacceptable. Jinnah in a forceful speech made in favour of his amendment said: “My amendment accepts the Communal Award until a substitute is agreed upon between the communities concerned. It may be that our Hindu friends are not satisfied with Communal Award, but at the same time I can also tell the House that my Muslim friends are not satisfied with it either…and, again speaking as an individual, my self-respect will never be satisfied until we produce our own scheme… But why do I accept it? …I accept it because we have done everything that we could so far to come to a settlement…therefore, whether I like it or whether I do not like it, I accept it, because unless I accept that no scheme of Constitution is possible. ...Sir, this is a question of minorities and it is a political issue… Minorities means a combination of things. It may be that a minority has a different religion from the other citizens of the country. Their language

191

may be different, their race may be different, their culture may be different, and the combination of all these various elements-religion, culture, race, arts, music, and so forth makes the minority a separate entity in the State, and that separate entity as an entity wants safeguards. Surely, therefore, we must face this question as a political problem; we must solve it and not evade it.” Jinnah’s argument carried the House by a vote of 68 to 15 with the official block and elected Europeans voting with him. Jinnah’s speech in the Assembly raised the hope on all the sides that there would be a settlement of communal problems by mutual agreement. At this time Dr. Rajendra Prasad was the Congress President and he was also anxious for a settlement. Both of them made sincere efforts for an agreed solution, but unfortunately they failed to evolve a formula, which could satisfy all parties concerned. Ultimately, they issued the following statement: “We have made earnest efforts to find a solution. We regret that in spite of our best efforts, we have not been able to find a formula. We realize that the communal harmony and concord are essential for the progress of the country and we can only hope that forces will arise which will make a future attempt more fruitful.” Jinnah was so anxious to arrive at a settlement with the Congress that he often absented himself from the Assembly debates so as to be free to resume his conversations with Dr. Rajendra Prasad. He was very much impressed with his talks with Rajendra Prasad and realized the difficulties the later had with the extreme attitude of Hindu Mahasabha. Jinnah, however, hoped:

192

“The leaders of the Congress with their wider experience and very good training, would overcome that section and assure the Muslims that it is not going to be a Hindu Government, but an Indian Government in which the Muslims will not only have a fair and just treatment but also that they will be treated as the equals of the Hindus…”
(Mohammad Ali Jinnah by M.H Saiyid, pg 526)

Jinnah’s strategy at this point was to turn back toward the Congress to see if its leadership might not, in fact, be prepared to concede all that MacDonald’s Communal Award had promised to Muslims, thus clearing the way for Hindus and Muslims to join forces in a common front against the White Paper. Jinnah hoped the time was ripe for communal peace and was ready to launch a new series of talks aimed at weaning Congress from its dependence upon the Hindu Mahasabha position. “Can we at this eleventh hour bury the hatchet, and forget the past in the presence of imminent danger,” Jinnah asked Congress in his statement to the Associated Press: “Nothing will give me greater happiness than to bring about complete cooperation and friendship between Hindus and Muslims; and in this desire, my impression is that I have the solid support of Musalmans…Muslims are in no way behind any other community in their demand for national self-government. The crux of the whole issue, therefore, is: Can we completely assure Muslims that the safeguards to which they attach vital importance will be embodied in the future constitution of India?” Jinnah’s position at this time was rather peculiar. He was admired among the intelligentsia and educated

193

Hindus for his patriotism and political sagacity, but the extremist Hindus, particularly the Hindu Mahasabha, looked upon him with suspicion. Among the Musalmans, a section believed that his nationalistic views were not altogether serviceable to Muslim interests. British were not happy with him because of his strong criticism of the new Government of India Act.
(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 157)

Jinnah’s anxiety to settle all communal problems by mutual agreement is well illustrated by the following incident. In March 1936, great communal tension arose between the Muslims and the Sikhs for the possession of a building at Shahidganj, Lahore. The Muslims claimed the building as an old mosque and their claim was denied by the Sikhs. The situation was going out of control. In these circumstance, Jinnah was asked to settle the dispute. He accepted the invitation and came to Lahore. He was very much vexed that in those momentous times, the Muslims and the Sikhs should fritter away their energies in communal squabbles. In a meeting of the Muslims in Lahore, he said: “While we are not going to give up our claim for Shahidganj, we are going to make every effort for an honorable understanding with the sister community. We shall seek all remedies, by means of constitutional and peaceful methods, and there are many avenues and channels open to us…There is no question of defiance to or intimidation of the sister community. The Sikhs are a great community and nothing will please us more than an honorable settlement with them.”

194

On his initiative, a strong reconciliation committee was formed consisting of Sir Mohd Iqbal, Raja Narendra Nath, Sardar Buta Singh and several other prominent Hindu, Muslim and Sikh leaders and the dispute was amicably settled. His Excellency the Governor of the Punjab paid the following tributes to Jinnah’s peaceefforts: “I am greatly obliged to the efforts of Mr. Jinnah for this improvement and I wish to pay an unqualified tribute to the work he has done and is doing. Mr. Jinnah succeeded in his first task, namely, bringing the Muslim agitation to strictly constitutional and legal lines, and thus made it possible for Government to take action for which they had been awaiting an opportunity.”
(Jinnah by M.H.Saiyid, pg 532-533)

Hector Bolitho, in his book, “Jinnah-Creator of Pakistan at page 111 says: “The episode was important because it had obliged Jinnah to apply his theories to a specific incident; important also because it revealed Liaquat Ali Khan’s influence on his leader. Up to this time, Jinnah had never stepped down, to mingle with the people in their troubles: he had usually theorized over them, from afar. But, within twelve months of the first elections under the new constitution, Jinnah was learning to come closer to the voters who were to decide the shape of India’s political affairs, and his own destiny, in the next decade.” Jinnah always tried to be persuasive, as will be seen from a speech he made in April 1936 before the Jamait-ul-ulema Conference at Delhi. He said: “It was for the first time that a representative Government was being established in India and this meant the rule of majority,

195

and naturally the minorities had apprehensions as to what the majority would do. Majorities were likely to be tyrannical. Power and authority were likely to intoxicate people; therefore provisions for safeguards are essential for the minorities in any scheme of a democratic constitution.” In the same speech, he said: “The eighty million Muslims of India are willing and even more anxious than any other community to fight for the freedom of Mother India, hand in hand with other communities.”
(Jinnah by M.H.Saiyid, pp 537-538)

Earlier in March, while speaking to some of the members of the League in Delhi, Jinnah said: “We must think of the interests of the community. Unless you make the best efforts, you will fail and you will command no respect and no body will bother to consult you. Organize yourselves and play your part… The Hindus and Muslims must be organized separately, and once they are organized they will understand each other better, and then we will have not to wait for years for an understanding…I am helping eighty million people, and if they are more organized they will be all the more useful for the national struggle.”
(Jinnah-Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 112)

Bombay Session of the Muslim League: The Muslim League met in Bombay in April 1936. The Bombay session of the Muslim League initiated the process of transforming the Muslim League into a mass movement with district branch volunteers throughout the country to spread the League’s message in every Muslim town and village. An initial fund of half a million was raised by the League Council to pay for expanded

196

secretariat needs. The student volunteers were recruited from Aligarh and other universities to carry on the political spade work. Jinnah’s idea voiced by Sir Syed Wazir Hasan in his presidential address, was to issue a joint Congress-League invitation to all other progressive political parties in the country, to find such minimum measure of agreement to act together to draft constitution for India. It was one more try for the original Lucknow Pact approach and pre-Nehru report all parties conference concept. He had even gone so far as to draft four points that would serve to lure Congress Liberals, and possibly even the Mahasabha to a Round Table Conference, this time on Indian soil. 1. A democratic responsible government, with adult franchise, to take place of the present system; 2. Repeal of all exceptionally repressive laws and the granting of the right of free speech, freedom of the press and organization; 3. Immediate economic relief to the peasantry; state provision for educated and uneducated unemployed; and an eight-hour working day, with fixed minimum wages for the workers; 4. Introduction education. Jinnah moved the resolution stating League’s emphatic protest against forcing the constitution as embodied in the Government of India Act of 1935, upon the people of India against their will, and in spite of their repeated disapproval and dissent. Speaking on the resolution, Jinnah advised his followers, indeed all Indians to treat the new federal scheme the same way as of free, compulsory primary

197

the Germans had reacted to the Treaty of Versailles. He viewed constitutional agitation as the only sound approach for pressuring the British into changing their scheme, since, as he put it, armed revolution is an impossibility, while non-cooperation had been tried and found a failure. To effect such a constitutional transformation, however, required all communities to stand shoulder to shoulder.” That same month, Jinnah stood before the Muslim League, urging his followers to stand shoulder to shoulder with Congress and other Hindu majority parties in the nation.
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 140-141)

To strengthen the Muslim League, bolster its bargaining position, and help prepare it for contesting elections, Jinnah was authorized at its Bombay meeting to appoint and preside over a new Central Parliamentary Board and affiliated provincial parliamentary boards. These boards, similar to those earlier established by Congress, were to become Jinnah’s organizational arms in extending his power over the entire Muslim community. It was not before late May that he managed to win acceptance from 54 prominent Muslim politicians to serve on his central board, which met for the first time in Lahore from June 8-11, 1936. Sir Fazl-I died on July 9, removing Jinnah’s foremost rival from the venue of his board’s birth. Jinnah’s lieutenants included men of wealth and business experience as well as wisdom. Elections to Provincial Assemblies: The elections to the Provincial Assemblies were held in 1937 under the Government of India Act of

198

1935. When the results of the elections were declared, it was found that the Congress had an overwhelming victory in comparison with the Muslim League and all other parties. In seven provinces, it obtained clear majority and only in Bengal, Punjab and Sind, it was in minority. The Muslim League could not make any headway in the Muslim majority provinces of Punjab and Bengal. In the Punjab, the majority of the Muslim seats went not to the League but to the Unionist Party led by Sir Sikandar Hayat Khan. In Bengal, it was not the Muslim League but the Krishak-Praja Party of Maulvi Fazlul Haque, which captured the largest number of Muslim seats. Out of a total of 485 Muslim seats, the League was able to secure only 108 seats. The Congress contested 58 Muslim seats, through the nationalist Muslims and won 26. B.R. Nanda in his book, “Critics of Gandhi, at pages 86-88 says: “Jinnah met with an electoral disaster of the first magnitude in 1937. Not only had the Muslim electorate failed to vote his party to office in the Muslimmajority provinces, his party had been routed. It seemed he could do little to improve his position until the next round of elections. He set out to achieve through a propaganda what the ballot box had denied him. He decided to use the dynamic of religious emotions to acquire political influence and power. Nehru was horrified when during a bye-election in U.P. in 1937, Jinnah appealed in the name of Allah and the Holy Koran for support of the Muslim League candidate. “To explain the name of God and religion in an election context,”, Nehru declared, “is an extraordinary thing…even for a humble canvasser. For Mr. Jinnah to do so is

199

inexplicable. I would beg him to consider this aspect of the question.” B.R.Nanda further says: “When Nehru returned from Europe in 1938, he remarked: “The League leader had begun to echo the Fascist tirade against democracy… Nazis were wedded to negative policy. So also was the League. The League was anti-Hindu, anti-Congress, antinational. The Nazis raised the cry of hatred against the Jews, the League raised its cry against the Hindus.” Some time after the election results were out K.M. Munshi saw Gandhi at Wardha and pressed his view that the Congress should accept office in the provinces where it held majority. Rajgopalachari had also been pressing Gandhi for the same. Gandhi told Munshi in his characteristic knack of giving a political formula a moral edge, that he would advise the Working Committee to accept office only where the Congress had a majority in the Provincial Legislatures and that too under certain conditions. He told Munshi: “If I invite you to my place, I have to assure you that I will treat you as a friend. If the Government of India wants us to accept the office, they must assure us that the Governor will not use his powers under the 1935 Act.” On 22nd June 1937, the Viceroy Linlithgow, issued a statement, the substance of which was that the Governors would not provoke conflict with the Ministers. On 7th July, the Congress Working Committee, which met at Wardha resolved that “Congressmen be permitted to accept office where they may be invited thereto. But it desires to make it clear that office is to be accepted and utilized for the purpose of working in

200

accordance with the lines laid down in the Congress Policy of combating the new Act on the one hand and prosecuting a constructive program on the other.” The Congress ministries were formed in eight provinces, including Bombay. A serious situation arose with regard to the choice of the Muslim member, wherever Congress ministries were formed. At that time it did not appear to be formidable; but, as events were to show ten years later, it was the beginning of the end of united India. Democratically speaking, the election had established the Congress claim to represent the country as a whole, but only technically. Out of a total of 836 general i.e. Hindu seats in the Provinces, it had won 715 seats. But the Congress Muslims had fared very badly; out of a total of 485 Muslim seats in the Provinces, the Congress could contest only 58 seats and win 26. The situation in the United Provinces and Bombay was particularly difficult. In U.P., the Congress had contested 9 seats out of 66 Muslim seats and lost all; In Bombay, it had contested 2 Muslim seats out of 30 and lost both. In General Election, the League could win only 108 seats on its official ticket; in the Province of Bombay it had won only 20 seats out of 30, the rest going to the independents. Jinnah was in a depressed mood. Rejected by the Muslim electorate, suspected by the orthodox Leaguers, and slighted by the British, he hoped for recovery with Congress help. Quite for some time after the elections he was trying for an understanding with the Congress for Ministry making. During the elections in the United

201

Provinces the League had opposed the powerful groups of Muslim landlords and taluqdars and had maintained rapproachment with the Congress. It was in this context and in that province that Jinnah thought of an experiment on Congress-League coalition and hoped that a success there might lead to similar experiments elsewhere. But when his emissary Khaliquzzaman first broached this idea to Nehru, the latter showed no interest. Subsequently the Chief Minister designate of the United Provinces, Govind Ballabh Pant, and the League leaders finally discussed laid down the issue but for could not reach agreement. In mid-July 1937, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad conditions Congress-League cooperation viz. that the Muslim League group in the U.P. Legislature should cease to function as a separate group and that the Muslim League Parliamentary Board in U.P. should be dissolved. The negotiations continued for a few days more before they finally broke down. K.M. Munshi writes: After the elections were over and the Congress had agreed to accept office, Jinnah told me that ‘we’ (Congress and the Muslim League) should work together. I promised to convey his wishes to Sardar and Gandhiji, which I did. I understand at the time that Jinnah had a similar discussion with B.G. Kher. After we were sworn in as Ministers, Sir Cowsji Jehangir, formally approached Sardar and the Maulana, on Jinnah’s behalf. At the time, both of them were my guests in Poona, and Kher and myself were present on several occasions when the discussions took place.” Munshi further writes: “The League wanted two Muslim Ministers in the Bombay Cabinet; when appointed they would not join the Congress nor accept its

202

discipline. In effect, they would be at the disposal of Jinnah to obstruct, defy or sabotage and, by using a veto, black-mail the Congress into submission. As this kind of arrangement would reduce Prliamentary Government and joint responsibility to mockery, both Sardar and Maulana could not entertain the demand.” Munshi continued: “About 8 or 10 independent Muslim members met Maulana and Sardar during those days, each one pressing his claim to be included in the Ministry. Ultimately Mohamad Yunus Nuri, a lawyer from Ahemadabad joined the Congress and was given a place in the Bombay Cabinet.”
(Pilgrimage to Freedom: K.M. Munshi, pg 47-48)

Jinnah’s ego as a formidable former Congress leader was deeply offended at what he regarded as neglect and disregard on the part of persons whom he regarded as his juniors in national politics and his reaction was one of raging fury. An earlier statement by Nehru that, “In the final analysis there are only two forces in India today-British imperialism and the Congress representing Indian nationalism” continued to jar on his ears as he began to read between the lines of Nehru’s latest Muslim mass contact theory. On 26th July 1937, Jinnah expressed his bitter feelings in a statement saying: “The Congress policy was that Musalmans should join the Congress unconditionally and sign their pledge. After the Congress was flushed with its majority in six provinces, it deliberately decided to ignore, nay, decided to non-cooperate with the Muslim League Paties in the various Provincial Legislatures, and they have in forming the ministries vindicated the justice and the fair

203

treatment to the minorities urged and promised by Mahatma Gandhi very recently by having made a good feast of all the loaves and fishes that are at present available for the Congress Party in the various Legislatures and getting a stray Musalman to exchange a pledge overnight to accept Ministry the next morning.”
(A Centenary History of Indian National Congress: Dr. B.N.Pande, pg 18-19)

To Nehru’s statement that there are only two parties-the British and the Congress that counted, Jinnah shot back: “There is a third party in this country and that is Muslims, whom the Congress will ignore at its own risk and peril.” He warned the Congress: “We are not going to be dictated by anybody. We are willing to cooperate with any group of a progressive and independent character provided, its program and policy correspond to our own. We are not going to be camp followers of any party. We are ready to work as equal partners for the welfare of India.” A few days later, Jinnah publicly warned Nehru and the Congress to leave the Muslims alone; but Nehru refused to be intimidated and decided, instead of backing away from India’s Muslim electorate, to seek to convert the vast mass of them to Congress’ platform. “Mr Jinnah…objects to the Congress interfering with Muslim affairs in Bengal and calls upon the Congress to let Muslims alone… Who are the Muslims? Apparently only those who follow Mr. Jinnah and the Muslim League.” “What does the Muslim League stand for?” Nehru asked. “Does it stand for the independence of India, for antiimperialism? I believe not. It represents a group of Muslims, no doubt highly estimable persons, for

204

functioning in the higher regions of the upper middle classes and having no contacts with the Muslim masses and few even with the lower middle class. May I suggest to Mr. Jinnah that I come into greater touch with the Muslim masses than most of the members of the Muslim League.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 147-148)

Nehru had propounded his mass contact theory in his presidential address at the All-India National Convention of Congress legistors on 19th March 1937. The first Muslim to feel alarm at Nehru’s mass contact theory was Muhammad Iqbal who drew the attemtion of Jinnah to Nehru’s address almost immediately. “It is absolutely necessary,” Iqbal advised Jinnah on 20th March, “to tell the world both inside and outside India that the economic problem is not the only problem in the country. From the Muslim point of view the cultural problem is of much greater consequence to most Indian Muslims. At any rate it is not less important than the economic problem. In his subsequent letters during those last days of his life, Iqbal assured Jinnah that the atheistic socialism of Jawaharlal is not likely to receive much response from the Muslims and urged him to rescue the League fom the clutches of the upper classes and make it a body of the masses. Side by side, he drilled the idea of Islamic separatism into the mind of Jinnah by suggesting the redistribution of the country to provide one or two Muslim States with absolute majorities. “Don’t you think,” he asked Jinnah on 28th May, “that the time for such a demand has already arrived? Perhaps, this is the best reply you can give to the atheistic socialism of Jawaharlal Nehru. Muslim India

205

hopes that at this serious juncture your genius will discover some way out of our present difficulties. Iqbal again wrote to Jinnah on 21st June: “I know that you are a busy man, but I do hope that you won’t mind my writing to you so often, as you are the only Muslim in India today to whom the community has a right to look up for safe guidance through the storm which is coming to the North-West India and perhaps to the whole of India.” Rapidly did Jinnah transform himself into a spirited communal leader, having everything to say against Congress ministries, against Hindi and Bande Mataram, the Congress flag and Hindu nationalism, even though his vision for separation was yet to take place.
(A Centenary History of Indian Congress: Dr.B.N.Pande, pg 117-119)

The short-sightedness of Jawaharlal Nehru is well illustrated by what happened in U.P. after the elections. There the League and the Congress fought the elections hand in hand. Jamait-ul-Ulema-Hind was an influential Muslim organization. The Jamait had supported the League as well as the Congress on the express understanding that after the elections were over, the League and the Congress would work in cooperation. Chaudhari Khaliquzzaman and Nawab Ismail Khan were then the leaders of the Muslim League in U.P. They naturally expected some substantial share in the composition of the ministry as the League had returned a substantial number of members to the Assembly. But when the time came to form the U.P. Ministry, Nehru refused to give them their due share. With regard to Nehru’s action in this matter, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad

206

in his book, “India Wins Freedom” says: “If the U.P. League’s offer of cooperation had been accepted, the Muslim League Party would for all practical purposes have merged in the Congress. Jawaharlal’s action gave the Muslim League in U.P. a new lease of life. All students of Indian politics know that it was from U.P. that the League was reorganized. Mr. Jinnah took full advantage of the situation and started an offensive which ultimately led to Pakistan.” Brecher in his book, “Nehru-A Political biography” writes: “ The Congress went beyond contemptuous words. During the election campaign the two parties had cooperated to some extent, notably in the United Provinces, where developed a tacit understanding that a Coalition Government would be formed. However, this was before the elections, when the Congress did not expect a clear majority. After the elections it was no longer necessary to make concessions. The League offer of cooperation was now treated with disdain.” Frank Moraes in his biography of Nehru says: “Had the Congress handled the League more tactfully after the elections, Pakistan might never have come into being…Jinnah certainly created Pakistan. But the Congress by its sins of omission and commission also helped to make it possible. Misreading the poor showing of the Muslim League at the polls…the Congress spurned Muslim League’s overture for a Coalition. The result was not to drive the League into political wilderness but to strengthen Jinnah’s hands as the foremost champion of Muslim claims and rights.”

207

Penderel Moon, who served with the I.C.S. before and after independence, describes Congress’ failure to cooperate with the League as the prime cause of the creation of Pakistan. Pyarelal, Gandhi’s Secretary calls it a tactical error of the first magnitude and says that the decision of the Congress High Command to exclude the League was taken against Gandhiji’s best judgment. Sir Percival Griffiths, a leader of the European Group in the Indian Central Legislature has written of this tactical blunder in his book, ‘British Impact on India: “The Congress High Command refused to sanction Congress-League Coalitions and in the Hindu majority provinces ministries consisting only of Congressmen were formed. In the United Provinces, for example, Muslim representatives were invited to join the ministry, but only on condition that they became members of the Congress Party and that the Muslim League ceased to exist. In other provinces, similar conditions were imposed, and with one exception members of the Muslim League were rigorously excluded from office. “The Congress Party was fully within its rights in adopting this exclusive policy and may even have felt that it was following normal parliamentary practice. There can be little doubt, however, that it made a grave tactical blunder. There was no difference in social or economic policy serious enough to make Congress-League Coalitions unnatural or unworkable, and the Muslims therefore felt that they were excluded from office merely because the Congress was essentially a Hindu body. This aroused resentment among the Muslims and strengthened the authority of the Muslim League.

208

Moreover, it increased the danger that political division in India would be drawn permanently on communal lines. “…Although the Muslims were uneasy at the growing strength of the Congress, they had not seriously thought of demanding Pakistan. All the Congress Party leaders had to do in order to establish their power was to be a little conciliatory in their dealings with the Muslims…” Stanley Wolpert, in his book “Jinnah of Pakistan,” at page 148 writes: “It would not be last of Nehru’s political errors of judgment in his dealings with Jinnah, but it was one of the most fatal mistakes he ever made in a moment of hubris. More than Iqbal, it was Nehru who charted a new mass strategy for the League, prodding and challenging Jinnah to leave the drawing rooms of politics to reach down to the hundred million Muslims who spent most of each day laboring in rural fields. There was, of course, only one possible way for the League to stir that mass, to awaken it, and to lure it to march behind Muslim leadership. The cry of Islam-in danger- of din (religion) alone could emerge as the unique stand of Muslim League. “No common principle or policy binds them,” Nehru had taunted, referring to Jinnah’s independent ‘party’ in the Assembly. And for Jinnah this was as significant a turning point, traumatically triggered by public humiliation, as the Congress non-cooperation resolution rebuke he had sustained at Nagpur in 1920.” However, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, in his autobiography justifies the action of the Congress thus: “As a matter of fact, the Muslim League had not acquired any great prestige and popularity at that time. …The

209

Congress, therefore, had no reason to take a Muslim Leaguer as a minister.” Rajmohan Gandhi in his book, “Eight Lives-A Study of Hindu Muslim Encounter,” at page 146 says: “We can fairly accuse the Congress of 1937 of being stingy and haughty. It could have openly invited the League as a partner and disproved allegations that it sought Hindu rule. Yet it would be an error to conclude that the Congress rejected partnership with Jinnah merely because of miserliness or because success had turned its head; it did so also in the interest of the cohesion. Nehru, Patel and Azad believed that Jinnah would be a difficult partner. The thought of having to obtain his concurrence for every measure of the new ministries did not appeal to them or to other Congressmen.” Lucknow Session of the Muslim League1937: To strengthen the League vis-à-vis the Unionists, Iqbal wanted Jinnah to hold the League’s 1937 session in Punjab, but Jinnah shrewdly chose to woo rather than alienate Sir Sikandar Hyat Khan. Iqbal thought he needed Jinnah for the sake of Punjab; Jinnah knew that he needed Hyat for the sake of the Qaum as a whole. Jinnah instinctively realized that his main strength would come from Muslims in Hindu-majority provinces. He therefore chose Lucknow as the venue for the session that would mark the birth of the new Jinnah, transforming the “Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim Unity” into the advocate of Muslim separation-the Lucknow where, in 1916, Jinnah had architected the LeagueCongress Pact.

210

(Eight Lives-A Study of Hindu Muslim Encounter by Rajmohan Gandhi, pg 147)

The All-India Muslim League session was held in Lucknow on 15th October 1937. In his presidential address Jinnah said: “The Muslim League stands for full national democratic self-government for India. Various phrases are used such as, Purna Swaraj, Self-government, complete independence, responsible government, and Dominion Status. There are some who talk of complete independence. But it is no use having complete independence on your lips and the Government of India Act 1935, in your hand. These paper declarations, slogans and shibboleths are not going to carry us anywhere. What India requires is a complete united front and honesty of purpose and then by whatever name you may call your Government is a matter of no consequence, so long as it is a Government of the people, by the people and for the people.” Drawing the attention of his audience to the burning questions like the enforcement of Bande Mataram, and the Congress Flag, Jinnah explained how the Hindu Governments were influencing all and sundry to obey their mandates in these regards. “On the very threshold,” he said, “of what little power and responsibility is given, the majority community has clearly shown their hand that Hindustan is for Hindus. The result of the present Congress policy will be class bitterness, communal war, and strengthening of the Imperialistic hold. As a consequence, I dare say, that the British Government will give the Congress a free hand in this direction. I feel that a fearful reaction will set in

211

when the Congress has created more and more divisions amongst Indians themselves, and made the united front impossible.” Analysing the Congress attitude towards the Hindu-Muslim Jinnah said: “The present leadership of the Congress during the last ten years, has been responsible for alienating the Musalmans of India more and more, by pursuing a policy which is exclusively Hindu; and since they have formed Governments in the six provinces where they are in majority; they have by their words, deeds and programs shown, more and more, that the Musalmans cannot expect any justice or fair play at their hands. Wherever they were in a majority and wherever it suited them, they refused to cooperate with the Muslim League parties and demanded unconditional surrender and the signing of their pledge.” Jinnah made an appeal to the Muslims to ponder over the situation and decide their own fate by having one single, definite, uniform policy, which should be loyally followed through out India. He said: “It is the height of defeatist mentality to throw ourselves to the mercy and good-will of others and the highest act of perfidy to the Muslim community; and if that policy is adopted let me tell you, the community will seal its doom and will cease to play its rightful part in the national life of the country and the Government…Do not be disturbed by the slogans and the taunts such as are used against the Musalmans-communalists, toadies and reactionaries. The worst today on earth, the most wicked communalist today amongst Muslim, when he surrenders question and the minority problem,

212

unconditionally to the Congress and abuses his own community, becomes the nationalist of nationalists tomorrow! These terms and words and abuses are intended to create an inferiority complex among the Muslims and to demoralize them; and are intended to sow discord in their midst and give us a bad name in the world abroad.” To the Musalmans of India in every province, in every district, in every tehasil, in every town Jinnah said: “Your foremost duty is to formulate a constructive and ameliorative programme of work for the people’s welfare, and to devise ways and means for the social, economic and political uplift of the Musalmans… Organize yourselves, establish your solidarity and complete unity. Equip yourselves as trained and disciplined soldiers. Create the feeling of an esprit de corps, and of comradeship amongst yourselves. Work loyally, honestly and for the cause of your people and your country. No individual or people can achieve anything without industry, suffering and sacrifice. There are forces which may bully you, tyrannize over you, and intimidate you, and you may even have to suffer. But it is by going through this crucible of the fire of persecution which may be leveled against you, the tyranny that may be exercised, these the threats and intimidations and that may and unnerve you-it is by resisting, by overcoming, by facing disadvantages, hardships suffering, maintaining your true convictions and loyalty, that a nation will emerge, worthy of its past, glory and history, and will live to make its future history greater and more glorious not only in India, but in the annals of the world. Eighty millions of Musalmans in India have nothing to

213

fear. They have their destiny in their hands, and as a well-knit, solid, organized, united force can face any danger, and withstand any opposition to its united front and wishes. There is a magic power in your own hands. Take your vital decisions-they may be grave and momentous and far-reaching in their consequences. Think a hundred times before you take any decision, but once a decision is taken, stand by it as one man.” Jinnah for the first time at this session appeared in a black punjabi sherwani (long coat) and loose trousers and black Persian lamb cap, which later came to be known as ‘Jinnah Cap’ shedding the Saville Row suit. Maulana Hasrat Mohani, who moved the resolution for full independence said: “Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru and others are talking of breaking, tearing and burning the federal plan but he was convinced that Messrs. Gandhi, Nehru and Malviya would very soon accept it with thanks for they believed that although it might not bring real independence and freedom for India, it would inaugurate Hindu Raj at the Center as in the Provinces and that the entry of the Hindu princes in the Government of India would strengthen the power and position of Hindus as a whole. Those who believed that Jawaharlal Nehru was above communalism or that he was the man who would solve the communal problem by bringing lasting amity and unity between the Hindus and Muslims, either were living in a fools’ paradise or are the enemy of Islam in India.” Mohani further said: “Jawaharlal’s secret of popularity with the Hindus was his wanton attack on Muslim leaders and his pet theories are, that there is no Hindu-Muslim problem that the question of minorities did not exist at all and that the

214

Muslims

have

no

separate

culture,

individuality,

distinguished from that of the Hindus requiring any special safeguards for their protection and preservation. This was exactly the plea of Mahasabhaits-Hindu Permanand, the communalists. Accordingly Bhai

president of the Hindu Mahasabha welcomed Nehru’s statement and congratulated him on his boldness. The fundamentally communalism Hindu of Nehru nature was and not Brahmanical but decreasing

increasing in intensity.” The League’s resolution on independence, which was adopted runs as follows: “Resolved that the object of the All-India Muslim League shall be the establishment in India of full independence in the form of a federation of free democratic states in which the rights and interests of the Musalmans and other minorities are adequately and effectively safeguarded in the constitution.” Gandhi immediately wrote to Jinnah: “I carefully went through your speech. As I read it, it is a declaration of war.” Jinnah replied: “I am sorry you think my speech at Lucknow is a declaration of war. It is purely in selfdefence. Kindly read it again and try to understand it; evidently you have not been following the course of events of the last twelve months.” Gandhi wrote back to Jinnah: “You seem to deny that your speech was a declaration of war, but your later pronouncements too confirm the first impression…In your speeches, I miss the old nationalist. When in 1915, I returned from the self-imposed exile in South Africa, everybody spoke of you as one of the staunchest of nationalists and the hope of both Hindus and Muslims.

215

Are you still the same Mr. Jinnah? If you say you are, in spite of your speeches, I shall accept your word.” Jinnah, in reply sent a letter to Gandhi in which he said: “…You are not acquainted with what is going on in the Congress press-the amount of vilification, misrepresentation and falsehood that is daily spread about me-otherwise I am sure you would not blame me.” Jinnah further wrote: “You say that in my speeches you miss the old nationalist. Do you think that you are justified in saying that? I would not like to think what people spoke of you in 1915 and what they speak and think of you today. Nationalism is not the monopoly of any single individual, and in these days it is very difficult to define it; but I do not wish to pursue this line of controversy any further.” In his speech at Patna on 27th October 1937, Jinnah said: “Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru described the League session as the last ditch of the political reaction. He was so confident of his program of mass contact that he closed his eyes to all realities. But what happened to the mass contact program? What was it for? It was to get hold of men who will be their creatures, who will sign their program and sing Bande Mataram. The majority of the Muslims have no confidence in those Muslims who are willing to sign the pledge to work out the policy of the Congress. Yet there are just the persons who are accepted as ministers-Muslim ministers. This is adding insult to the injury. It is following the policy of ostrich. They think that we are all fools. “Jawaharlal Nehru talks of hunger and poverty, goes about threatening zamindars with complete

216

extinction and brings the large peasants under his influence. The Hindu industrial magnets, merchants, princes and money lenders- the real blood-suckers of millions of poor men, receive his blessings, for they feed the Congress organization. He assured the mill owners of Bombay that one could amass any amount of wealth and yet remain a socialist! The Congress never hesitated to break its principles whenever it suited its purpose.” In a crushing reply to the Congress and his opponents, Jinnah said: The Congress far from being a national organization became a symbol of Hindu revivalism and the Hindu Raj under the ages of British Crown for the exploitation and suppression of minorities. The Brahmin hierarchy and the British bureaucracy entered into an unholy alliance. The British Government threw all its notion of its Governmental prestige to the winds and went out of its way to placate the Hindus. British Imperialism consistently pandered to the whims and fancies of the majority community.” Jinnah further said: “The Congress wanted to establish an authoritative totalitarian and Fascist Hindu Raj. They were striving their utmost to delude Muslims into believing that the League was an ally of imperialism and the imperialistic Government. Nowhere in my career, I have allied myself with imperialism, out side or inside the Legislature. The League would never be an ally of anyone except the Muslim nation.”
(Muslim India by Mohammad Noman, pg 358, 367, 368)

Jinnah was invited to address the Jamait-ulUlema Conference in Delhi. In his address Jinnah said: “It was for the first time that a representative Government was being established in India and this

217

meant, in other words, the rule of majority. A majority is likely to be tyrannical. Power and authority are likely to intoxicate them; therefore provisions for safeguards were essential for the minorities in any scheme of democratic constitution… Close the controversy over Communal Award for the time being, and God willing, we would produce a better settlement.” “Even the Law member” said Jinnah, “ had told Hindus that the question was not only dead but cremated and its ashes thrown in the Ganges.” Jinnah added, “No constitution is permanent. Constitutions are made by men but men are not made by constitutions.” Referring to the future step for Muslims, he said: “We must think of the interests of our community. Unless you make the best efforts, you will fail and command no respect and no body will bother to consult you. Organize yourselves and play your part. There was nothing wrong in working for one’s community. It has been a fashion to decry persons serving their own community as a communalist, but I am not afraid of being called a communalist, because I am helping my community. I am helping eighty million people and if they are more organized, they will be all the more useful for the national struggle.” Lord Brabourne, the Govrnor of Bombay wrote a letter to Lord Linlithgow in 1937 in which he said: “Jinnah told him that he was planning to consolidate the Muslim League throughout India. His policy is to preach communalism morning, noon and night and teach the Mohamedans, generally to stand on their own feet and make themselves independent of the Hindus.”

218

Jinnah went to Calcutta to inaugurate the AllIndia Muslim Students Federation on 29th December 1937. This federation was the outcome of a merger of the Lucknow Muslim Students’ Conference with the Aligarh Muslim University Union and All-Bengal Muslim Students’ League. Some three hundred Muslim students from the North-West Frontier Province to Assam had assembled. Jinnah, in his inaugural address said: “…I have only rung the alarm bell at Lucknow. The bell is still ringing. But I do not see the fire brigade. I want you to produce the fire brigade. And God willing, we shall extinguish the fire… We do not want to be reduced to the position of the Negroes of America.” The Raja of Mamudabad and Mohammad Noman were elected as president and general secretary of the newly arouse born All-India Muslim Students’ among Federation Muslim respectively. The objectives of the federation were: to political consciousness the students and to prepare them to take their proper share in the struggle for the freedom of the country; to work for the advancement of the economic and social conditions of the Musalmans; and to popularize Islamic culture and studies and to strengthen the Islamic religion and faith by combating anti-Islamic forces. In January 1938, Jinnah visited Allahabad. He appealed to the Congress leaders to join hands with the League and settle the communal problem, which he said, was essential for unity and for the political advancement of India. He pleaded that he had nothing nearer and dearer to his heart than the general welfare of India and amelioration of his countrymen. Both in private and public, he had been making incessant efforts to convince

219

the Congress leaders that their policy was disastrous and would lead them nowhere. Jinnah moved the following resolution in the AllIndia Muslim League assembled in Bombay in January 1938: “…The League is of the opinion that the All-India Federal Scheme of the Central Government, embodied in the Government of India Act 1935, is fundamentally bad; it is most reactionary, retrograde, injurious and fatal to the vital interest of British India vis-à-vis the Indian States, and it is calculated to thwart and delay indefinitely the realization of India’s most cherished goal of complete responsible Government. “The League feels convinced that the present scheme will not bring peace and contentment to the people, but on the contrary it will lead to disaster if forced upon and persisted in as it is entirely unworkable in the interest of India and people. “Federation was wholly rotten and totally unacceptable and absolutely unworkable in as much as it consisted 80% safeguards and 20% responsibility. This 20% responsibility too was hampered and hedged in, in several ways.” In February 1938, addressing the students of the Muslim University in Aligarh, Jinnah reviewed the work done by the Muslim League right from 1924 to the Round Table Conference and said: “In the face of danger, the Hindu sentiment, the Hindu mind, the Hindu attitude led me to the conclusion that there was no hope of unity. The Musalmans were dwellers in No Man’s Land; they were led either by flunkeys of the British Government or the camp followers

220

of the Congress. Whenever the attempts were made to organize Muslims, toadies and flunkeys on the one hand and traitors in the Congress camp on the other hand frustrated the efforts. I began to feel that neither could I help India, nor change the Hindu majority, nor could I make the Musalmans realize their precarious position. I felt so disappointed and so depressed that I decided to settle down in London. Not that I did not love India; but felt utterly helpless. However, I kept in touch with India. At the end of four years I found that the Musalmans were in the greatest danger. I made up my mind to come back to India, as I could not do them any good from London. Having no sanction behind me I was in the position of the beggar and received the treatment that a beggar deserves. “Then in 1935, I entered into negotiations with Congress President. A formula was evolved but the Hindus won’t look at it. In 1936, I requested the Congress to stop bitter controversy over the Communal Award. Good, bad or indifferent, let it stand in the absence of an agreed solution. Let us face the bigger issues. From 1924 to 1936- it came to this nothing doing. In sheer desperation I called the session of the Muslim League in April 1936, and the League decided to contest the elections in the provinces and achieved a considerable measure of success.” Recapitulating the position from 1936, Jinnah said: “Firstly, there was the bureaucracy, they felt that they have acquired a prescriptive right over the Musalmans. They said; well, if this Jinnah fellow comes, Muslims will be out of our hands. It has happened so. The Musalmans, thank God. They are today out of their

221

hands. But now the power has passed to certain extent into the hands of the majority community. It is now clear that the British Government shows no signs of coming to the help of Muslims but is throwing them to the wolves. I am glad; so far so good. To a very great extent, the Muslim League has freed the Musalmans from the clutches of the British Government. But now there is another power, which claims to be the successor of British Government. Call it by whatever name you like, but it is Hindu and Hindu Government. “… We were trying to make the Muslim League completely representative of the Muslim community. … I was dubbed as a communalist by the Congress press. They said; ‘Well Jinnah may be alright, but he is surrounded by toadies and flunkeys, who will swallow him up.’ Every time some plausible excuse was made to ignore the Muslims. The Congress tried to poison the minds of our youths to delude them into the belief that the Congress stood for complete independence and would remove poverty and hunger. But what were really their designs? They wanted certain assurances from the British Government, which they failed to get. They are not only utilizing, but working the very constitution they had so vehemently professed to wreck. To Muslims they gave all sorts of silly assurances and good-will. In politics good-will and love and affection and regard can only be demonstrated when you are strong. “…The constitution foisted on us is also modeled more or less on the British pattern. But there is an essential difference between the body politics of this country and that of Britain. The majority and minority parties in Britain are alterable, tomorrow Liberal and day

222

after Labour. Here we have a permanent Hindu majority and the rest are minorities which cannot within any conceivable period of time hope to become majorities. The majority can afford to assume a non-communal label, but it remains exclusively Hindu in its spirit and action. The only hope for minorities is to organize themselves and secure definite and statutory safeguards for their rights and interests. Without such safeguards for their rights and interests no constitution can work successfully in India.” Jinnah Musalmans: “Come to the platform of League. If the Muslims are united the settlement will come sooner than you think. You will have established your claim to achieve freedom. After a few months work, the League’s name is known in every corner of India. Lakhs of people are joining it. Even those who are against us, will realize that they are under a serious delusion and their only course is to join the League and make the Musalmans speak with one voice. “What the League has done is to set you free from the reactionary elements of Muslims and to create the opinion that those who play their selfish game are traitors. It has certainly freed you from that undesirable element of Maulvis and Maulanas. I am not speaking of Maulvis as a whole class. There are some of them who are as patriotic and sincere as many others, but there is a section of them which is undesirable.” Concluding his address Jinnah said: “I am convinced and you will agree with me that the Congress policy is to divide the Muslims among made the following appeal to the

223

themselves. It is the same old tactics of the British Government. They follow the policy of their masters. Do not fall into their trap. This is a moment of life and death for the Musalmans. Take it from me that unless there is unity among the Muslims at any cost, they will be lost. If our house is defective, we must set it right ourselves. If you support us we will set it right ourselves as we like and desire. “The Muslim League is determined to win freedom, but it will be a freedom not only for the strong but also for the weak and the suppressed… We have succeeded in organizing Musalmans all over India as they were never at any rate during the last century and a half. They are beginning to realize that they are a power, and if only they will take their affairs in their own hands and stand together united there is no power that can resist their will. Before the Lucknow session, the membership of the League ran in several thousands but today there are hundreds of thousands of Musalmans who are under the banner of the League. Today it can be said that every thinking and patriotic Musalman is in the fold of the Muslim League. If we continue with the same enthusiasm and vigour, there is not a least doubt that the All-India Muslim League will soon be a power to reckon with.” Analysing the attitude of the Congress, Jinnah said: “The Congress attitude so far can be summed up thus. First, that the Communal Award must go lock, stock and barrel; second, that there must be no separate electorates; and third, that there must be no differential franchise and if possible there should be no reservation of seats for any community. The result of this will be

224

obvious, namely, that the Musalmans will be wiped out from securing any adequate representation whether in the Legislature or in the Municipal, Local and District Boards.” Jinnah declared; “Muslims have made it clear more than once that besides the question of religion, culture, language and personal laws, there is another question equally of life and death for them and that their future destiny and fate are dependent upon their securing definitely their political rights, their due share in the national life, the Government and the administration of the country. They will fight for it till the last ditch and all the dreams and notions of the Hindu Raj must be abandoned. They will not be submerged or dominated and they will not surrender so long as there is life in them. The Muslim League claims the status of complete equality with the Congress or any other organization. We cannot surrender, submerge or submit to the dictates of the High Command of the Congress, which is developing into a totalitarian authoritative caucus functioning under the name of the Working Committee and aspiring to the position of a ‘Shadow Cabinet’ of a future Republic. The Muslim League is not only carrying on struggle for the Muslims but it maintains that all other important minorities must have the same sense of security and place in the Sun of India where, they will enjoy the rights and privileges of free citizens and not be ground down by caste tyranny and caste rule. In my opinion, the Congress is making one of the greatest blunders by pursuing its present policy.”

225

Before

passing

the

mantle

of

Congress

presidentship to Subhashchandra Bose, the following correspondence took place between Nehru and Jinnah: On 25th February 1938, Nehru wrote to Jinnah: “I am afraid I must confess that I do not yet know what the fundamental points of dispute are. It is for this reason that I have been asking you to clarify them. So far, I have not received any help in this direction.” Six days later, Jinnah replied: “…I am only amazed at your ignorance. This matter has been tackled since 1925 right upto 1935 by the most prominent leaders in the country. So far no solution has been found. I would beg of you to study it, and …not take up a selfcomplacent attitude; and if you are in earnest I do not think you will find much difficulty in realizing what the main points in dispute are, because they have been constantly mentioned both in the press and public platform, even very recently.” On 6th April Nehru wrote in the name of Congress: “…Obviously, the Muslim League is an important communal organization and we deal with it as such. But we have to deal with all organizations and individuals that come within our ken. We do not determine the measure of importance or distinction they possess… Inevitably, the more important the organization, the more the attention paid to it, but this importance does not come from outside recognition but from inherent strength. And the other organizations, even though they might be younger and smaller, cannot be ignored.” Jinnah replied to Nehru after six days: “It seems to me that you cannot even accurately understand my letter… Your tone and language again display the same

226

arrogance and militant spirit, as if the Congress is the sovereign power… I may add that, in my opinion, as I have publicly stated so often, that unless the Congress recognizes the Muslim League on a footing of complete equality and is prepared as such to negotiate for a Hindu-Muslim settlement, we shall have to wait and depend upon our inherent strength which will determine the measure of importance or distinction it possesses. Having regard to your mentality, it is really difficult for me to make you understand the position any further…”
(Jinnah-Creator of Pakistn: Hector Bolitho, pg 116-117)

In an interview later, Jinnah remarked of Nehru: “…He seems to carry the responsibility of the whole world on his shoulders and must poke his nose into everything except minding his own business.” During negotiations with Subhash Chandra Bose, in April 1938, Jinnah put forward the claim that the Muslim League must be accepted as the authoritative and representative organization of Musalmans. To this Bose made the following observations in a note, which he handed over to Jinnah. “The Congress cannot possibly consider itself or function as if it represented one community only and thus itself becoming a communal organization. At the same time the Congress is perfectly willing to confer and cooperate with their organizations which represent minority interests…. It is true that All-India Muslim League is an organization representing a large body of Muslim opinion which must carry weight. It is for this reason that the Congress endeavoured to understand the view point of the League and to come to an understanding with it. The Congress, however, would be

227

bound to consult other existing Muslim organizations which have cooperated with the Congress in the past. Further, in the event of other groups of minority interests being involved, it will be necessary to consult representatives of such interests.” The League Executive Council discussed this note on 6th June 1938 and decided that the League president cannot proceed to discuss the matter with the Congress president except on the basis outlined by him already. The Council also considered the suggestion of Gandhiji for the appointment of a committee for the settlement of communal question and resolved that it would not be desirable for the Congress to include any Muslim to represent the Congress. The Congress Working committee at its meeting held on 25th July 1938 decided to send the following reply to the League as dictated by Gandhi: “There are Muslim organizations which have been functioning independently of the Muslim League. Some of them are strong supporters of the Congress. Moreover, there are individual Muslims who are Congressmen, some of whom exercise no inconsiderable influence in the country. Then there is the Frontier Province, which is overwhelmingly Muslim and which is solidly with the Congress. “…It has been an unbroken tradition with the Congress to represent all communities, all races, and all classes to whom India is their home. From its inception it has often had distinguished Muslims as Presidents and as General Secretaries who enjoyed the confidence of the Congress and of the country…. No one comes to the Congress by virtue of his faith, he is in and out of the

228

Congress by virtue of his endorsement of the political principles and policy of the Congress. The Congress, therefore, is in no sense a communal organization. “…So far as the Working Committee is aware, the Muslim League is a purely communal organization, and its membership too is open only to Muslims. So far as the Congress is concerned, if the other minorities have a grievance against the Congress, it is always ready to deal with them as it is its bounden duty to do, being by its very constitution and organization representative of all India without distinction of caste or creed.” The Executive Council of the Muslim League at its meeting held on 2nd August 1938, authorized Jinnah to send the following reply to the Congress Working Committee: “The Council is fully convinced that the Muslim League is the only authoritative political organization of the Musalmans of India. The position was accepted when the Congress-League Pact was arrived at in 1916 at Lucknow and ever since, till 1935, when JinnahRajendra Prasad conversation took place, it has not been questioned. The All-India Muslim League, therefore, does not require any admission or recognition from the Congress. But in view of the fact that the position of the League has been questioned by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the President of the Congress, in one of his statements wherein he asserted that there were only two parties in the country, namely, the British Government and the Congress, it was considered necessary by the Executive Council to inform the Congress of the basis on which the negotiations proceed. between the two organizations could

229

“The Council is of the opinion that the Muslims in the Congress do not and cannot represent the Musalmans of India, for the simple reason that their number is very insignificant and that as members of the Congress community. “The Council still hopes that the representative character of the Muslim League will not be questioned and that the Congress will proceed to appoint a committee.” The Congress President Subhash Chandra Bose informed Jinnah on 2nd October 1938: “The substance of your letter seems to be that the League does not expect the Congress, whether implicitly of explicitly, to acknowledge its status as the authoritative Muslim organization of India. If this view is accepted by the League, I am authorized to state that the Working Committee will confer with the Committee that may be appointed by the League to draw up the terms of settlement. “The Working Committee will be represented by at least five of its members at the sitting of the Conference.” As authorized by the League Executive Council, Jinnah sent the following reply to Subhash Chandra Bose on 10th October 1938: “The Executive Council of the All-India Muslim League regrets very much that the Working Committee of the Congress should have entirely misread my letter dated 2nd August 1938 which is quite clear and does not require any elucidation or further interpretation. The Muslim League is still ready to proceed with the they have disabled themselves from representing or speaking on behalf of the Muslim

230

negotiations for settlement of the Hindu Muslim question on the basis defined by my letter referred to above and would appoint its representative to meet the Committee that may be appointed by the Congress on the footing indicated by us in our three resolutions of the 5 th June 1938 already communicated to you.”
(Mohammad Ali Jinnah by Matlubul Hasan Saiyid, pg 606-618)

A Provincial Muslim League Conference was called by the Province of Sind at Karachi on 8th October 1938. Addressing the Conference Jinnah said: “…Truth is suppressed and falsehood is broadcast in the Congress press and news agencies. Of course, we have no press. But the greater misfortune of India is that the High Command of the Congress have adopted a most brutal, oppressive and inimical attitude towards the AllIndia Muslim League since they secured majority in six provinces. It is common knowledge that the average, common man, whether he is a member of the conviction or convenience arrogates to himself the role of a ruler of this country, and although he does not possess the educational qualification, training and culture and traditions of the British Bureaucrat, he behaves and acts towards the Musalmans in a much worse manner than the British did towards Indians. “…The foolish policy of the Congress is responsible not only for intense bitterness between the two sister communities but among the various classes and interests. It has resulted in serious clashes and conflicts and ill-will, which are bound to recoil in long run on the progress and welfare of India. And it seems that the Congress is only tumbling into the hands of those who

231

are looking forward to the creation of a serious situation which will break India vertically and horizontally.” Speaking of the situation the Muslamans had to face, Jinnah said: “It is no use relying upon any one else. We must stand on our own inherent strength and build up our own power and forge sanctions behind our decisions. It is no use our blaming others. It is no use accusing our opponents only. It is no use expecting our enemies to behave differently. If the Musalmans are going to be defeated in their national goal and aspirations it will only be by the betrayal of Musalmans who honestly feel for their community and its welfare and those who are misled or misguided and indifferent to come on to the platform of the Muslim League and under its flag; and united at any and all costs and speak and act with one voice... I am not fighting the Hindu community as such nor have I any quarrel with the Hindus generally for I have many personal friends amongst them.” Patna Session of All-India Muslim League: The 26th Annual session of the Muslim League was held at Patna from 26-29, December 1938. Jinnah, in his presidential address reviewed the progress made by the Muslim League in a short span and said: “…Things have now changed. One thing has been demonstrated beyond doubt, namely, that the Congress High Command wanted the Muslims to be a mere under study of the Congress, mere foot-pages of the Congress leaders, to be used, governed and brought under the heels when they had served the purpose of the Congress. The Congress leaders wanted them to submit unconditionally to their Hindu Raj. That game has now

232

fully been exposed. The Congress has killed every hope of Hindu-Muslim settlement in the right royal fashion of Fascism. The Congress does not want any settlement with the Muslims of India. The Congress wants the Muslims to accept the settlement as a gift from the majority. The Congress High Command makes the preposterous claim that they are entitled to speak on behalf of the whole of India, that they alone are capable of delivering goods. Others are asked to accept the gift as from a mighty sovereign. I want to make it plain to all that we Muslims want no gifts. The Muslims want no concessions. We, Muslims of India, have made up our minds to have our fullest rights but we shall have them as rights, not as gifts or concessions. “There are four forces at play in the country. Firstly, there is the British Government. Secondly, there are rulers and the people of the Indian States. Thirdly, there are the Hindus and fourthly, there are Muslims. The Congress press may clamour as much as it likes, they may bring their morning, afternoon, evening and night editions, the Congress leaders may cry as much as they like that the Congress is a national body. But I say it is not true. The Congress is nothing but a Hindu body. The presence of the few Muslims-the few misled and misguided ones and the few who are there with ulterior motives- does not, and cannot make it a national body. I challenge anybody to deny that the Congress is mainly a Hindu body. The Congress does not even represent all the Hindus. “The Congress High Command, in the intoxication of power, like persons who are drunk, may make any claim it pleases them to make. But such claim cannot

233

alter the true character of the Congress. It remains what it is-mainly a Hindu body.” Proceeding further, Jinnah said: “ I have no hesitation in saying that the genius behind the Congress attitude and the Congress policy is no other than Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, who is out to destroy the ideal with which the Congress was started. He is the one man responsible for turning the Congress into an instrument for the revival of Hinduism. His ideal is to revive Hindu religion and establish Hindu Raj in India, and he is utilizing the Congress to further this object… Today the Hindu mentality, the Hindu outlook, is being carefully nurtured, and Muslims are being forced to accept these new conditions and to submit to the orders of the Congress leaders.”
(Mohammad Ali Jinnah by Matlubul Hasan Saiyid, pg 24-33)

The second day of the Patna session was devoted to discussing the resolution authorizing the Working Committee of the League to resort to “Direct Action,” if and when it decided to do so, to redress the grievances and to protect the elementary rights of the Musalmans of Bihar, the United Provinces, and the Central Provinces, three Hindu majority Provinces from which most atrocities against Muslims had been reported. This resolution was carried unanimously. Jinnah, called it a revolutionary departure from the past, for until this juncture the League had been wedded only to the policy of constitutional progress. The Council of All-India Muslim League passed a resolution asking ulema to issue “Fatwas” warning Muslims against joining the Congress. The Fatwas were to be published under the authority of the Muslim

234

League and propagated among Fridy congregations in the moaques in towns and villages. While speaking on the Finance Bill in the Assembly in March 1939, Jinnah said: “Sir, I cannot possibly approve of the Budget as it has been presented to us, because we have no lot or share in it. Now, Sir, the position of the All-India Muslim League Party in this House is very peculiar one. Fortunately or unfortunately, we hold the balance in the House. If we are supporting the Government, then I think the Finance Member can safely pilot this Bill to his satisfaction and he can carry this Bill without a comma of it being altered… Sir, in the past we have been following the principle that if the Government brought in a measure which was really for the good of the people, then we would support it… But, Sir, I see now that the policy must be altered. …Why do you expect us, I ask the Government, to draw the chest-nuts out of the fire on your behalf? Why do you expect us to continue to be subservient on the specious pleas which you put forward before us.” It was Jinnah’s most forthright explanation of the policy of mutual support he and the British Central Government adopted in 1938. He was, however, open in warning Congress not to misread his message to Government, which ended with a curt, “You may go on your own way.” On the other hand as regards the Congress party, Jinnah continued, “The Congress party is not only hostile to the Muslim League but they are inimical. Therefore, I say to them that cooperation between you and us is not possible... But let me tell youand I tell both of you-that you alone or this organization

235

alone or both combined will never succeed in destroying our souls. You will never be able to destroy that culture which we have inherited, the Islamic culture, and that spirit will live, is going to live and has lived. You may overpower us; you may oppress us; and you can do your worst. But we have come to the conclusion and we have now made a grim resolve that we shall go down, if we have to go down, fighting.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan: Stanley Wolpert, pg 170)

Prelude to Crisis: On 3rd September 1939, Lord Linlithgow, the Viceroy broadcast the news of Germany’s invasion on Poland. Linlithgow requested Gandhi to meet him for discussion and the later met him the next day. Gandhi gave the Viceroy a bit of his mind about the British hand in the communal tangle, expressing his fears that the British would never desire to see a unified, self-governing India and would ever continue to exploit the Muslim anxieties and communal differences in order to stay on. The hour of crisis had indeed struck in IndoBritish relations. There could be no uncertainty in the Viceroy’s mind about Congress opposition to the war effort. Princely India was of course with him. But much depended on the support of the Muslim League when Congress support was out of question. The same day that Linlithgow met Gandhi, he also met Jinnah. The discussion centred on strengthening each other’s hand and the Viceroy asked Jinnah a piquant question: Would he like him to turn the Congress ministries out? ‘Yes,’ replied Jinnah forthwith. “Turn them out at once. Nothing else will bring them to their senses. Their object,

236

though you may not believe it, and though I did not believe it till two years ago, is nothing less than to destroy both you British and us Muslims. They will never stand by you.” On that day, 4th September 1939, Jinnah told Linlithgow that the real escape from the prevailing deadlock lay in the partition of the country. The Congress was in no mood for any understanding with British, nor were the general public. Gandhi assured the nation that there was no question of any understanding at a personal level when grave national issues were involved. He said: “I have returned from the Viceregal Lodge empty-handed and without any understanding, open or secret. If there is to be any understanding, it would be between the Congress and the Government.” Nehru was on a brief visit to China when the war broke out. He cut short the visit and hastened back. At an interview to the press at Rangoon on 8th September, he said: “We do not approach the problem with a view to taking advantage of Britain’s difficulties. This war is going to change the face of things. The old order is dead and cannot be revived. If we are making for a new order let us do so consciously, defining it clearly and acting up to it from now onwards. The real test as to whether this struggle is for democracy does not lie in the loud enunciations of the principles but in the practice. If England stands for self-determination the proof of that should be India.” Nehru returned to India on 10th September. The Congress Working Committee met in an urgent session at Wardha from 8 to 15 September to

237

decide its policy in regard to the war. At Gandhiji’s special invitation, Subhash Chandra Bose attended the meeting. The committee passed the following resolution on 14th September: “The Congress has laid down that the issue of war and peace for India must be decided by the Indian people, and no outside authority can impose this decision upon them, nor can the Indian people permit their resources to be exploited for imperialist ends. Any imposed decision, will necessarily have to be opposed by them. The people of India have, in the recent past, faced great risks and willingly made great sacrifices to secure their own freedom and establish a free democratic state in India, and their sympathy is entirely on the side of democracy and freedom. But India cannot associate herself in a war said to be for democratic freedom when that very freedom is denied to her and such limited freedom as she possesses taken away from her.” The Working Committee invited the British Government to declare in unequivocal terms what their war aims were in regard to democracy and imperialism and how those aims were going to be applied to India and given effect to immediately. “The real test of any declaration is its application in the present, for it is the present that will govern action today and give shape to the future,” declared the Working Committee. Within four days of the announcement of the Congress resolution, the Working Committee of the Muslim League passed a resolution given below: “The Committee expressed their deep sympathy for Poland, England and France. The Committee, however, feels that real and solid Muslim cooperation and support

238

to Great Britain in this hour of her trial cannot be secured successfully if His Majesty’s Government and the Vicroy are unable to secure to the Musalmans justice and fair play in the Congress governed provinces where today their liberty, person, property and honour are in danger and even their elementary rights are most callously trampled upon.” The League further urged: “In order to counteract the Congress demand for a Constituent Assembly, the Legue leaders demanded an assurance from His Majesty’s Government that no declaration regarding the question of constitutional advance for India should be made without the consent and approval of the All-India Muslim League nor any constitution be framed and finally adopted by His Majesty’s Government and the British Parliament without such consent and approval.” Sardar Patel advised all the Congress Prime Ministers not to allow their responsibilities to be overridden. A draft resolution for the Congressdominated Provincial Assemblies was prepared to express reget that the British Government have declared India as a participant in the war between Great Britain and Germany, without the consent of the Indian people and without consulting this Assembly. The Assembly considers this declaration, made in complete disregard of the opposition from Indian opinion, a contravention of the spirit of provincial autonomy, as also further measures adopted and laws passed in England and India limiting the powers and activities of Provincial Governments. The Viceroy, on the other hand sure of the support of the princes and the League, did not pay much

239

heed to the Congress terms. On 26th September, Gandhi met him at Simla and during a discussion lasting more than three hours, tried to make him agree to only two specific demands, namely, a declaration of the British intentions after the war, and an immediate sharing of power with the Indians. Lord Zetland in England announced on 27th September in the House of Lords that time has been ill chosen by the leaders of the Congress for a reiteration of their claims. “If Lord Zetland’s speech represents the mind of the English people or Government,” rejoined Nehru, “I have no hesitation in saying that there can be no compromise between the Congress and the British Government now or a thousand years hence.” Lord Linlithgow began a series of conversations with various party leaders. He saw Jawaharlal Nehru and Rajendra Prasad on 3rd October but had no better success than before. Nehru demanded a full-blooded, positive and unambiguous declaration which must use the phrase, “absolute freedom” for India at the end of the war and provide also for her unfettered liberty to frame her own constitution by means of a Constituent Assembly. Linlithgow wrote to Zetland: “It is a tragedy in many ways that at a time such as this we should have in so important a position a doctrinaire like Nehru with his amateur knowledge of foreign politics and of the international stage.” Nehru told the All-India Congress Committee convened at Wardha on 11th October 1939: “A slave India cannot help Britain. We want to assume control of our Government and when we are free we can help the

240

democracies.” Gandhi issued his own statement next day in which he said: “The long statement made by the Viceroy simply shows that the old policy of divide and rule is to continue. So far as I can see the Congress will be no party to it, nor can the India of Congress conception be a partner with Britain in her war with Herr Hitler.” The Viceroy made a statement on 17th October in which he said that the intentions and aims of His Majesty’s Government remained what they had been when the Act of 1935 was adopted. The Congress Working Committee at its meeting held on 22nd October at Wardha declared: “It could not give any support to Great Britain, for it would amount to an endorsement of the imperialist policy which the Congress has always sought to end. As first step in this direction, the Committee call upon the Congress Ministries to tender their resignations.” On 26th October 1939, speaking in the House of Commons, Sir Samuel Hoare declared that His Majesty’s Government was prepared, if certain conditions were secured to associate Indian opinion in a closer and more responsible manner with the conduct of the war by provisional expansion of the Viceroy’s Executive Council. This, however, failed to appeal to the Congress, and the Congress Ministries in the Congress majority provinces resigned and the Governors in those provinces assumed power under Section 93 of the Government of India Act, 1935. In Bengal, Punjab and Sind, the non-Congress Ministries continued to function as before, and in Assam, a coalition ministry was formed under Muhammad Saadullah.

241

On 1st November 1939, Lord Linlithgow invited Gandhiji, Rajendra Prasad and Jinnah for a joint discussion to explore the possibilities of Hoare’s declaration; but the discussion proved barren. The next day the Viceroy repeated his offer in writing, and Jinnah met Gandhiji and Rajendra Prasad, probably at the instance of the Viceroy. Nothing came out of this meeting. In an interview the Viceroy conceded a veto to Jinnah over the political future of the country: “The position which I invited you and the other gentlemen present to consider as leaders of the Congress and Muslim League (is that), given the great importance of enduring harmonious working at the centre, you should enter upon discussions between yourselves with a view to discovering whether you could reach a basis of agreement between yourselves in the provincial field consequent on which you could let me have proposals which would result in participating in the Central Government as members of the Executive Council.” Some time later, Sir Francis Low, then the Editor of the Times of India met Jinnah, who told him that at this interview Gandhiji and he were speaking in different languages. Gandhiji kept on insisting on the need for a Constituent Assembly based on adult suffrage. Jinnah claimed special safeguards for the Muslims and opposed the very idea of a Constituent Assembly. At this interview with Low, Jinnah characterized Gandhiji as the ‘biggest Hindu in India’ who had, for his main object, the domination of India by Hindus. K.M. Munshi, in his book’ The Pilgrimage to Freedom’ writes: “The parting of the ways between

242

national democracy and the ‘master-racist’ attitude was complete. “To many of the ‘master-racists’ who gathered under the leadership of the Muslim League, Pakistan was not a goal; it was a step to gain a solid base from which to conquer Hindu India, as their imaginary ancestors had done, if necessary with foreign aid. It was a price that was demanded of the nationalists, if India had to secure freedom from British rule. The choice before nationalist India was between the devil and the deep sea. “Even after the price was paid, there were certain sections, who could not out-grow the ‘master-race’ complex. In 1948, Kasim Razvi, a U.P. Muslim, graduated from the Aligarh Muslim University, and the leader of the Ittehad, unequivocally adopted the ‘master-race’ attitude towards the Hindus on India’s achieving freedom from the British rule. It was a recurrent theme of his speeches: ‘…A Hindu who is a Kafir, a worshipper of stone and a monkey, who drinks cow’s urin and eats cow-dung in the name of religion and who is a barbarian in every sense of the word, wants to rule (over) us! What an ambition and what a day-dream!… Hyderabad will shortly recover the Ceded Districts. The day is not far off when the waves of the Bay of Bengal will be washing the feet of our sovereign, who will not be called the Nizam of Hydrabad and Berar but also of the Northern Sircars.’” Munshi further writes: “The declaration made in 1965 by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, Foreign Minister of Pakistan, in the Security Council of the United Nations, that the Muslims had ruled over and “civilized” India for eight hundred years and that they would do it again, expressed rather crudely the ‘master-race’ complex towards Hindus

243

which, even after partition, characterizes some Muslim leaders in Pakistan.”
(Pilgrimage to Freedom: K.M.Munshi, pg 70-71)

Gandhi made the following appeal to Jinnah through his Harijan journal: “British refusal to make the required declaration of British war aims about India has perhaps come as a blessing in disguise. It removes the Congress out of the way to enable the Muslim League to make its choice, unfettered by the Congress administration in eight provinces (Assam, Bihar, Bombay, C.P, Madras, Orissa, U.P. and NWFP), as to whether it will fight for the independence of an undivided India. I hope that the League does not want to vivisect India… Presently the talks between Janab Jinnah Saheb and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru will be resumed. Let us hope that they will result in producing a basis for a lasting solution of the communal tangle.” Day of Deliverance: On 2nd December 1939, Jinnah issued a dramatic proclamation, announcing his choice of Friday, 22nd December as a Day of Deliverance and thanks giving as a mark of relief that the Congress regime has at last ceased to function. Jinnah’s proclamation stated: “…The Congress Ministries have conclusively demonstrated and proved the falsehood of the Congress claim that it represents all interests justly and fairly, by its decidedly anti-Muslim policy. “…The Congress Ministries both in the discharge of their duties of the administration and in the legislatures have done their best to flout the Muslim opinion, to destroy Muslim culture, and have interfered

244

with their religious and social life, and trampled upon their economic and political rights; that in matters of differences and disputes the Congress …invariably have sided with, supported and advanced the cause of the Hindus in total disregard and to the prejudice of the Muslim interests. “The Congress Governments constantly interfered with the legitimate and routine duties of district officers even in petty matters to the serious detriment of the Musalmans, and thereby created an atmosphere which spread the belief amongst the Hindu public that there was established a Hindu Raj, and emboldened the Hindus, mostly Congressmen, to ill-treat Muslims at various places and interfere with their elementary rights of freedom.” Gandhi felt as soon as he read this proclamation that any prospect of resolving the Hindu-Muslim problem by further talks was over. Nehru wrote to Jinnah: “… What has oppressed me terribly is the realization that our sense of values and objectives in life and politics differs so very greatly. I had hoped, after our conversation that this was not so great, but now the gulf appears to be wider than ever.” Jinnah replied: “It was not possible to carry on talks regarding the Hindu-Muslim settlement till we reach an agreement with regard to the minority problem… I can only say that if you desire to discuss the matter further I am at your disposal.” Jinnah won strong support from South India’s “Dravidistan” Justice Party’s leader Periyar E.V.Ramaswami Naicker for his Day of Deliverance. Naicker called upon his party as well as all Dravidians to celebrate 22nd December on a grand scale to get rid of the

245

Congress menace. Similar statements of enthusiastic support were issued by leaders of the All India Depressed Classes Association and smaller Anglo-Indian groups. At a public meeting in Bombay, Sir Currimbhoy Ebrahim of the Muslim League moved a resolution, and Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, untouchable leader of he Independent Labour party seconded it. Jinnah wrote an article for the “Time and Tide,” London in January 1940, in which he said: “Democratic systems based on the concept of a homogeneous nation such as England are very definitely not applicable to heterogeneous countries such as India and this simple fact is the root cause of all India’s constitutional ills. The British people, being Christians, sometimes forget the religious wars of their own history and today consider religion as a private and personal matter between man and God. This can never be the case in Hinduism and Islam, for both these religions are definite social codes which govern not so much man’s relation with his God as man’s relation with his neighbour.” The Viceroy
th

Lord

Linlithgow

made

an

announcement on 10 January 1940 from Bombay: “I know gentlemen, that you appreciate the difficulty of the position of the Viceroy and the difficulty of the position of His Majesty’s Government, faced as they are with strong and conflicting claims advanced by bodies and interests to whose views the utmost attention must be paid, and whose position must receive the fullest consideration. Justice must be done as between the various parties, and His Majesty’s Government are determined to see justice done, and I would venture again to emphasise the case for compromise… As to the

246

objective there is no dispute. His Majesty’s Government are not blind-nor can we be blind here-to the practical difficulties involved in moving at one step from the existing constitutional position into that constitutional position which is represented by Dominion Status. But here, again, I can assure you that their concern and mine is to spare no effort to reduce to the minimum the interval between the existing state of things and the achievement of Dominion Status.” K.M. Munshi had an interview with Lord Linlithgow on 12th January 1940. The following questions and answers are relevant to the subject and therefore reproduced below: Munshi: Why do you let Mr. Jinnah make things impossible? You have got the Aga Khan, you have got your friend Sir Sikandar. It is your actions which send up Mr. Jinnah’s rates. That leads him to make absurd charges against us. You do not even reply to them. And he is so difficult now that any friendly approach to him has become impossible. Linlithgow: I know that he has become very difficult, but that is only from a short view of things. For the present he has made himself into a rallying center of minorities. Time alone can remove him from that position. Sikandar cannot occupy that position. But from a long view of things Jinnah cannot succeed. He would soon be found out as a stumbling block to progress. Munshi: If there is no alliance between nationalist India and Britain it may be that we may go, may be for a long time, but then Savarkar and Jinnah will fight it out. Linlithgow: It will be a disaster.
(Pilgrimage to Freedom: K.M.Munshi, pg 392-393)

247

Fifty-third session of the Congress was held at Ramgarh on 19-20 March 1940 under the presidentship of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. In his presidential address, Azad urged his co-religionists to realize the value of the teachings and the splendid traditions of Islam in India, and how for centuries the Muslims have lived as the children of the soil, enjoying brotherhood with the Hindus in developing common nationality. In order to dispel the fear complex, as a minority, from the Muslim mind, he pointed out that in four provinces out of eleven in India there is a Muslim majority, the other religious groups being minorities. If British Baluchistan is added, there are five provinces with Muslim majorities. Even if we are compelled at present to consider this question on the basis of religious groupings, the position of the Muslims is not that of a minority only. If they are in a minority in seven provinces, they are in a majority in five. This being so, there is absolutely no reason why they should be oppressed by the feeling of being a minority. Azad referred to the British hand behind the communal controversy, to their policy of divide and rule, and their constant attempt to convince the world that the question of the minority barred the way to a proper solution of India’s political problem. The resolution: “The British made India a belligerent country without any reference to the people was considered an affront to them which no self-respecting and freedomloving people could accept or tolerate. The policy of Britain was to carry on the war for imperialist ends for preservation of her empire. Under these circumstances, it Ramgarh session passed the following

248

is clear that the Congress cannot in any way, directly or indirectly, be party to the war, which means continuance and perpetuation of this exploitation. The Congress therefore strongly disapproves of Indian troops being made to fight for Great Britain and of the drain from India of men and material for the purpose of the war. Neither the recruiting nor the money raised in India can be considered to be voluntary contributions from India. Congressmen and those under the Congress influence cannot help in the prosecution of the war with men, money or material.” Nothing short of complete independence was once again declared as the goal of the Congress. With it, the demand for a Constituent Assembly, elected on the basis of adult suffrage, was reiterated with greater vehemence. Ramgarh session was dissolved on 20th March 1940. Within three days, on 23rd March, India was stunned at the news of the Lahore resolution of the AllIndia Muslim League. Lahore Session of the Muslim League 1940: On 26th March of 1940 the All India Muslim League at its Lahore Session passed the following Resolution:

1. While approving and endorsing the action
taken by the Council and the Working Committee of the All-India Muslim League as indicated in their resolution dated the 27th of August, 17th and 18th of September and 22nd of October 1939 and February 1940 on the constitutional issue, this Session of the AllIndia Muslim League emphatically reiterates that the Scheme of Federation embodied in the

249

Government of India Act, 1935, is totally unsuited to, and unworkable in the peculiar conditions of this country and is altogether unacceptable to Muslim India;

2. It further records its emphatic view that while
the declaration dated the 18th of October 1939 made by the Viceroy on behalf of His Majesty’s Government is reassuring in as far as it declares that the policy and plan on which the Government of India Act 1935, is based will be reconsidered in consultation with the various parties, interests and communities in India, Muslim India will not be satisfied unless the whole constitutional plan is reconsidered de novo and that no revised plan would be acceptable to the Muslims, unless it is framed with their approval and consent; 3. Resolved that it is the considered view of this Session of the All India Muslim League that no constitutional plan would be workable in this country or acceptable to the Muslims unless it is designed on the following basic principles, viz, that geographically contiguous units are demarcated into regions which should be so constituted with such territorial readjustments as may be necessary, that the areas in which the Muslims are numerically in a majority as in the North-West and Eastern Zones of India should be grouped to constitute “Independent States” in which the Constituent Units shall be autonomous and sovereign;

250

4. That

adequate,

effective

and

mandatory

safeguards should be specifically provided in the constitution for minorities in these units and in the regions for the protection of their religious, cultural, economic, political, administrative and other rights, and interests in consultation with them; and in other parts of India where the Musalmans are in a majority, adequate, effective and mandatory safeguards shall be specifically provided in the constitution for them and other minorities for the protection of their religious, cultural, economic, political, administrative and other rights, and interests in consultation with them; 5. This Session further authorizes the Working Committee to frame a Scheme of Constitution in accordance with these basic principles, providing for the assumption finally by the respective defence, necessary. While speaking on the resolution Jinnah said: “The problem in India is not of an intercommunal character, but manifestly of an international one, and it must be treated as such. So long as this basic and fundamental truth is not realized, any constitution that may be built will result in disaster and will prove destructive and harmful not only to the Musalmans, but to the British and Hindus also. If the British Government, really is earnest and sincere to secure peace and happiness of the people of this sub-continent, the regions external of all powers such as affairs, communications,

customs, and such other matters as may be

251

only course open to us all is to allow the major nations separate homelands by dividing India into autonomous national states. There is no reason why these states should be antagonistic to each other. On the other hand, the rivalry and the natural desire and efforts on the part of one to dominate the social order and establish political supremacy over the other in the Government of the country will disappear. It will lead more towards natural good-will by international pacts between them, and they can live in complete harmony with their neighbours. This will lead further to a friendly settlement all the more easily with regard to minorities by reciprocal arrangements and adjustments between Muslim India and Hindu India, which will far more adequately and effectively safeguard rights and interests of Muslim and various other minorities. “It is extremely difficult to appreciate why our Hindu friends fail to understand the real nature of Islam and Hinduism. They are not religions in the strict sense of the word, but are, in fact, different and distinct social orders and it is a dream that the Hindus and Muslims can ever evolve a common nationality, and this misconception of one Indian nation has gone far beyond the limits and is the cause of most of our troubles and will lead India to destruction if we fail to revise our notions in time. The Hindus and Muslims belong to two different religious philosophies, social customs, and literature. They neither inter-marry nor inter-dine together and, indeed, they belong to two different civilizations, which are based mainly on conflicting ideas and conceptions. Their aspects on life and of life are different. It is quite clear that Hindus and Musalmans

252

derive their inspiration from different sources of history. They have different epics, different heroes and different episodes. Very often, the hero of one is a foe of the other, and, likewise their victories and defeats overlap. To yoke together two such nations under a single state, one as a numerical minority and the other as a majority, must lead to growing discontent and the final destruction of any fabric that may be so built up for the Government of such a state. “Jinnah pointed out: “History has presented to us many examples such as the Union of Great Britain and Ireland, Czechoslovakia and Poland. History has also shown to us many geographical tracts, much smaller than the sub-continent of India, which otherwise might have been called one country but which have been divided into as many states as there are nations inhabiting them. The Balkan Peninsula comprises as many as seven or eight sovereign states. Likewise the Portuguese and the Spanish stand divided in the Iberian Peninsula. Whereas under the plea of unity of India and one nation which does not exist, it is sought to pursue here the line of one central government which we know that the history of the twelve hundred years has failed to achieve unity and has witnessed, during these years, India always divided into Hindu India and Muslim India. The present artificial unity of India dates back only to the British conquest and is maintained by the British bayonet, but the termination of the British regime, which is implicit in the recent declaration of His Majesty’s Government, will be the herald of the entire break-up with worst disaster than has ever taken place during the last one thousand years under Muslims. Surely, that is

253

not the legacy, which Britain would bequeath to India after 150 years of her rule, nor would Hindu and Muslim India risk such a sure catastrophe.” Jinnah declared: “Muslim India cannot accept any constitution which must necessarily result in a Hindu majority Government. Hindus and Muslims brought together under a democratic system forced upon the minorities can only mean Hindu Raj. Democracy of the kind with which the Congress High Command is enamoured would mean the complete destruction of what is most precious in Islam.” Jinnah threatened: “We have had ample experience of the working of the provincial constitutions during the last two and a half years and any repeatation of such a government must lead to civil war and raising of private armies as recommended by Mr. Gandhi to Hindus of Sukkur when he said that they must defend themselves violently or non-violently, blow for blow, and if they could not they must emigrate.” Concluding his speech, Jinnah said: “Musalmans are a nation according to any definition of a nation and they must have their homeland, their territory and their state. We wish to live in peace and harmony with our neighbours as free and independent people. We wish our people to develop to the fullest spiritual, cultural, economic, social and political life in a way that we think best and in consonance with our own ideals and according to the genius of our people. Honest demand and vital interest of millions of our people impose a sacred duty upon us to find an honourable and peaceful solution, which would be just and fair to all. But at the same time, we cannot be moved or diverted from our

254

purpose and objective by threats or intimidations. We must be prepared to face all difficulties and consequences, make all the sacrifices that may be required of us to achieve the goal we have set in front of us.” After his speech, Jinnah turned to Matlubul Hasan Saiyid, who was present at the Session and said: “Iqbal is no more amongst us, but had he been alive he would have been happy to know that we did exactly what he wanted us to do.” The Indian newspapers next day pronounced the Lahore resolution as, “Pakistan Resolution.” Jinnah accepted it; and in a speech he delivered later said: “No power on earth can prevent Pakistan. In winding up the session, Jinnah called it a “landmark in the history of India,” and concluded “the more you organize yourself, the more you will be able to get your rights.” The next day before leaving Lahore, Jinnah told reporters, “I have thoroughly enjoyed my stay in Lahore because of the result; otherwise I was worked to death.” The Lahore Resolution merely resuscitates a scheme which was put forth by Sir Mohamed Iqbal in his presidential address to the Muslim League in December 1930. It was however, taken up by one Rehmat Ali, who gave it the name ‘Pakistan.’ Mr. Rehmat Ali founded the Pakistan movment in 1933 while studying in London. He divided India into two, namely Pakistan and Hindustan. His Pakistan included the Punjab, Noth West Frontier Province, Kashmir, Sind and Baluchistan. The rest to him was Hindustan. His idea was to have an independent and separate Pakistan composed of five Muslim provinces

255

in the North as an independent State. The proposal was circulated to the members of the Round Table Conference, but never officially put forth. It seems an attempt was made privately to obtain the assent of the British Government, who, however, declined to consider it because they thought this was a revival of the old Muslim Empire. The League had only enlarged the original scheme of Pakistan. It sought to create one more Muslim State in the East to include the Muslims in Bengal and Assam. Barring this, it expressed in its essence and general outline the scheme put forth by Sir Mohamed Iqbal and propagated by Rehmat Ali.
(Pakistan or Partition of India by Dr. B.R.Ambedkar, pg 22-23)

Stanley Wolpert in his book, Jinnah of Pakistan at page 182 writes: “Jinnah’s Lahore address lowered the final curtain on any prospects for a single united independent India. Those who understood him enough to know that once his mind was made up he never reverted to any earlier position realized how momentous a pronouncement their Quai-I-Azam had just made. The rest of the world would take at least seven years to appreciate that he literally meant every word he had uttered that important afternoon in March. There was no turning back. The Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity had totally transformed himself into Pakistan’s great leader. All that remained was for his party first, then his inchoate nation, and then his British allies to agree to the formula he had resolved upon.” A few days later Gandhi was asked: “Do you intend to start general Civil Disobedience although Quaid-IAzam Jinnah has declared war against Hindus and has

256

got the Muslim League to pass a resolution favouring vivisection of India into two? If you do, what becomes of your formula that there is no Swaraj without communal unity?” To this Gandhi replied: “I do not believe that the Muslims, when it comes to a matter of actual decision, will ever want vivisection. Their good sense will prevent them. Their self-interest will deter them. Their religion will forbid the obvious suicide which the partition would mean. The two-nation theory is an untruth. Hindus and Muslims of India are not two nations. Those whom God has made one, man will never be able to divide.” However, Gandhi admitted that the step taken by the Muslim League at Lahore creates a baffling situation and said: “But I do not regard it so baffling as to make disobedience an impossibility…The Muslims must have the same right of self-determination that the rest of India has. We are at present a joint family. Any member may claim a division.” Other leaders of Congress reacted more strongly. Rajagopalachari, who was the first Indian GovernorGeneral of India said: “I consider it a sign of a diseased mentality that Mr. Jinnah has brought himself to look upon the idea of one India as a misconception and the cause of most the of our trouble.” as: Jawaharlal “Jinnah’s Nehru described resolution fantastic

proposals, reading it as a cat’s paw of British imperial duplicity.” He further said: “The whole problem has taken a new complexion and there is no question of settlement or negotiation now. The knot that is before us is incapable of being united by settlement; it needs cutting open. It needs a major

257

operation. Without mincing words, I want to say that we will have nothing to do with this mad scheme. I do not know what the consequences to the country would be. Who can say… We will, of course, oppose the partition scheme, but our goal is clear and we will march on our path. A struggle is inevitable now.” Sardar Patel too, felt that a final showdown with the British who were behind the entire episode of Muslim transigence had to come, but the question was when to start the fight. Master Tara Singh presiding over a Sikh conference at Lucknow on 15th April said: “If the Muslim League want to establish Pakistan they will have to pass through an ocean of Sikh blood.”
(A Centenary History of Indian national Congress: B.N.Pande, pg 35)

The Azad Muslim Conference: In April 1940, a conference of Muslims was held in Delhi under the name, “The Azad Muslim Conference.” The Muslims who met in the Azad Muslim Conference were those who were opposed to the Muslim League as well as to the Nationalist Muslims. They were opposed to the Muslim League firstly, because of their hostility to Pakistan and secondly because they did not want to depend upon the British Government for the protection of their rights. They were also opposed to the Nationalist Musalmans i.e. Congressites, because they were accused of indifference to the cultural and religious rights of Musalmans. The Azad Muslim Conference passed the following resolutions:

258

“This conference, representative of Indian Muslims who desire to secure the fullest freedom of the country, consisting of delegates and representatives of every province, after having given its fullest and most careful consideration to all the vital questions affecting the interests of the Muslim community and the country as a whole declares the following: India will have geographical and political boundaries of an individual whole and as such is the common homeland of all the citizens irrespective of race or religion who are joint owners of its resources. All nooks and corners of the country are hearths and homes of Muslims who cherish the historical eminence of their religion and culture, which are dearer to them than their lives. From the national point of view every Muslim is an Indian. The common rights of all residents of the country and their responsibilities, in every walk of life and in every sphere of human activity are the same. The Indian Muslim by virtue of these rights and responsibilities, is unquestionable an Indian national and in every part of the country is entitled to equal privileges with that of every Indian national in every sphere of governmental, economic and other national activities and in public services. For that very reason Muslims own equal responsibilities with other Indians for striving and making sacrifices to achieve the country’s independence. This is a self-evident proposition, the truth of which no right thinking Muslim will question. This conference declares unequivocally and with all emphasis at its command that the goal of Indian Muslims is coplete independence along with protection of their religious and communal rights, and that they are anxious to attain this

259

goal as early as possible. Inspired by this aim they have in the past made great sacrifices and are ever ready to make greater sacrifices. “The Conference unreservedly and strongly repudiates the baseless charge levelled against Indian Muslims by the agents of British Imperialism and others that they are an obstacle in the path of Indian freedom and emphatically declares that the Muslims are fully alive to their responsibilities and consider it inconsistent with their traditions and derogatory to their honour to lag behind others in the struggle for independence. By this Resolution they repudiated the scheme of Pakistan. Their second resolution was in the following terms: “This is the considered view of this Conference that only that constitution for the future Government of India would be acceptable to the people of India which is framed by the Indians themselves elected by means of adult franchise. The constitution should fully safeguard all the legitimate interests of the Muslims in accordance with the recommendations of the Muslim members of the Constituent Assembly. The representatives of other communities or of an outside power would have no right to interfere in the determination of these safeguards. By this Resolution the Conference asserted that the safeguards for the Muslims must be determined by the Muslims alone. The third Resolution was as under: “Whereas in the future constitution of India it would be essential, in order to ensure stability of government and preservation of security, that every citizen and community should feel satisfied, this Conference considers it necessary that a scheme of

260

safeguards as regards vital matters should be prepared to the satisfaction of the Muslims.
(Pakistan or Partition of India by Dr. B.R.Ambedkar, pg 200201)

His Highness the Aga Khan, pressed K.M.Munshi to meet Jinnah and arranged for an interview for 23 rd June 1940. Munshi met Jinnah at his residence in Bombay. The moment, Munshi touched the subject of CongressLeague alliance, Jinnah emphatically told: “Partition of India was the only way out. There was no arguing the thing, whatever the consequences.”
(Pilgrimage to Freedom: K.M.Munshi, pg 72)

Simla Talks: In June 1940, the Viceroy Lord Linlithgow, asked Jinnah and Gandhi to visit him in Simla. He hoped that they might inspire both Congress and the League to more lively support of Britain’s war. Diwan Chaman Lall and other non-partisan friends believed that India’s cause would be strengthened if the two leaders met and talked amiably together, before they were received by the Viceroy. Unfortunately, their pride made this cooperation impossible. Diwan Chaman Lall has said: “I went to Gandhi and proposed that Jinnah should meet him. I found the Mahatma sitting upon a white sheet, eating from a silver bowl. He looked up when I made the proposal, and gave me the surprising answer, ‘Adversity makes strange bedfellows.’ Diwan Chaman Lall then went to Jinnah, at the Cecil Hotel, in Simla, and tried to impress upon him the advantages that might come if only he and Gandhi could meet. He asked Jinnah, “May I tell Gandhi that you wish

261

to see him? Jinnah answered, “No. I am willing to see him, if he wishes; but I am not willing that you should say that I wish to see him.” Diwan Chaman Lall went back to Gandhi and asked, “Do you wish to see Jinnah?” Gandhi answered, “If I were to say that I wish to see Jinnah, it would be a lie. But if Jinnah wishes to meet me, I will walk on bare feet from here to the Cecil Hotel.” Mahatma and the Quaid-e-Azam did not meet, and the fragile hope of amity, before seeing the Viceroy, was lost.
(Jinnah: Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 136-137)

Jinnah saw Lord Linlithgow on 27th June and had a long discussion. He submitted his proposal to the Viceroy on 1st July in which he repeated the demands of the Muslims for the division of India, and insisted that Muslim leaders should be associated as equal partners in the Government both at the Centre and the Provinces and for the duration of war the Executive Council of the Viceroy be expanded to include at least as many Muslim members as Hindus, if the Congress comes in; otherwise Muslims, all to be chosen by the League, were to have the majority of additional council members.” Gandhi published his open letter to every Briton, in which he said: “No cause, however just, can warrant the indiscriminate slaughter that is going on minute by minute… I do not want Britain to be defeated, nor do I want her to be victorious in a trial of brute strength… I want you to fight Nazism without arms. I would like you to lay down the arms you have as being useless for saving you or humanity. You will invite Herr Hitler and Signor Mussolini to take what they want of the countries

262

you call your possessions. Let them take possession of your beautiful Island, with your many beautiful buildings. You will give all these, but neither your souls, nor your minds. If these gentlemen choose to occupy your homes, you will vacate them. If they do not give you free passage out, you will allow yourselves, man, woman and child, to be slaughtered, but you will refuse to owe allegiance to them… I am telling His Highness the Viceroy that my services are at the disposal of His Majesty’s Government, should they consider them of any practical use in advancing the object of my appeal.” Ignoring Gandhi’s open letter, Winston Churchill declared: “We shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields, and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills, we shall never surrender.” The Congress Working Committee held an emergency meeting from 3rd to 7th July 1940 at Delhi. It passed a resolution sponsored by Rajaji, renewing the demand for an immediate and an unequivocal declaration of full independence for India; and, in exchange for a provisional national government at the Centre commanding in confidence of all the elected elements in the Central Legislature, the Congress pledged to throw its full weight into the effort for the effective organization of the defence of the country. The resolution was ratified by the All India Congress Committee at its Poona Session on 27th July. On 8th August Linlithgow made an announcement on behalf of the British Government, which came to be known as the August Offer.

263

The August offer proposed the expansion of the Executive Council and the establishment of a War Advisory Council, and suggested that soon after the war a body of reperesentatives of principle elements in India’s national life be set up to frame a new constitution. “ As a result of Linlithgow’s interview with the Indian leaders, the Secretary of State, L.S.Amery, felt the necessity of issuing a declaration setting forth the aims and intentions of the British Government. Amery himself drew up a rough draft which he sent to Linlithgow for comments and criticisms, but the draft was changed to such an extent as to make it practically unacceptable to Indian leaders. For example, the declaration contained the following provision regarding the position of minorities: His Majesty’s Government’s concern that full weight should be given to the views of the minorities in any revision has also been brought out. That remains the position of His Majesty’s Government. It goes without saying that they could not contemplate the transfer of their present responsibilities for the peace and welfare of India to any system of Government whose authority is directly denied by large and powerful elements in India’s national life. Nor could they be parties to the coercion of such elements into submission to such a Government. This was a further step in giving Jinnah practically a veto in any constitutional set-up. The provision regarding the Constituent Assembly was equally unsatisfactory. The declaration stated: …His Majesty’s Government authorize me to declare that they will most readily assent to the setting up, after the conclusion of war, with the least possible

264

delay, of a body representative of the principal elements in India’s national life, in order to devise the frame work of the new constitution, and they will lend every aid in their power to hasten decisions on all relevant matters to the utmost degree. It was certain that the principal elements of national life were to be determined by the British Government, who could be depended upon to collect such diverse elements as they did during the Round Table Conferences. However, before publishing the August offer, Linlithgow sent advance copies to the leaders of the Congress, the Muslim League and the Hindu Mahasabha. Maulana Azad was at the time the President of the Congress. He writes: “Even without consulting my collegues, I declined the offer.” Gandhiji supported Azad, because he was a conscientious objector of war and violence. The other leaders were not willing to help the British in a war, which might or might not go in favour of Britain, and the British were not prepared to convert the Executive Council into a national government which might or might not support their war effort. Gandhiji again saw Linlithgow, but without coming to an agreement. The situation as it was developing could not continue any longer. On 13th October 1940, the Congress Working Committee after three day session, approved Gandhiji’s plan for ‘individual civil disobedience’ by a limited number of Satyagrahis selected by him. Acharya Vinoba Bhave, the great leader of Bhoodan Movement was the first Satyagrahi to be selected by Gandhiji; he addressed a meeting on 17th

265

October and was taken into custody; then followed Nehru, Azad, Sardar, Munshi and others.
(Pilgrimage to Freedom by K.M.Munshi, pg 72-74)

In November 1940, Amery made a speech stressing the essential unity of India and the need of maintaining the same. He pointed out the disastrous effect of the Balkanisation of the South-Eastern Europe on its people. He said that his object was to lay down the foundation of a constitution which would reconcile Indian differences and preserve India united in essentials. He regretted that the spirit of ‘India First’ was not strong enough to overcome the insistence on unpractical demands on one side, or undue suspicion on the other. The Working Committee of the Muslim League on 22nd February 1941 adopted the following resolution: “The Working Committee view with disapproval the recent pronouncements of Mr. Amery, Secretary of State give for an India, which are likely to to create his grave apprehensions in the minds of the Musalmans as they impression, contrary previous pronouncements, that His Majesty’s Government are still complementing the possibility of a constitution based on the economic and political unity of India… “It is unfortunate that Mr. Amery, having regard to his responsibility as the Secretary of State for India, should have allowed himself to indulge in slogans such as ‘India First.’ Musalmans of India are proud to be Indians and firmly believe in India for the Indians. It is in that spirit that the Lahore resolution was adopted, because the Musalmans are convinced that it is the only solution of India’s constitutional problems which will

266

ensure peace, harmony and satisfaction among all elements, interests and inhabitants of this vast country.”
(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 183-184)

The annual session of the Muslim League was held on 12th April 1941 in Madras. Jinnah in his presidential address said: “…Since the fall of the Moghul Empire, Muslim India was not so well organized and so alive and so politically conscious as it is today. We have established a flag of our own, a national flag of Muslim India. We have established a remarkable platform, which displays and demonstrates a complete unity of the entire solid body of Muslim India. We have defined in the clearest language our goal about which Muslim India was groping in the dark, and the goal is Pakistan. …That is our five year plan of the past. We have succeeded in raising the prestige and reputation of the League not only throughout this country-we have now reached the farthest corners of the world, and we are watched throughout the world. “Now what next? No people can ever succeed in anything that they desire unless they work for it and work hard for it. What is required now is that you should think-and I say this particularly to you, Delegates of the All-India Muslim League who have gathered here from all parts of India-we must now think and devise the programme of the five-year plan, and part of the five-year plan should be how quickly and how best the departments of the national life of Muslim India may be built up. “Speaking about the Congress, Jinnah said: “The Congress has taken up a position about which there is

267

absolutely no doubt. I should like to ask any man with a grain of sense, Do you really think that Gandhi, the supreme leader, commander and general of the Congress, has started his Satyagraha merely for the purpose of getting liberty of speech? Don’t you really feel that this is nothing but a weapon of coercion and blackmailing the British, who are in tight corner, to surrender and concede the Congress demands?” Jinnah concluded his speech with a warning to the British Government, because after all they are in possession of this land and the Government of this subcontinent. Please stop your policy of appeasement towards those who are bent upon frustrating your war efforts and doing their best to oppose the prosecution of war. You are not loyal to those who are willing to stand by you and sincerely desire to support you; you desire to placate those who have the greatest nuisance value in political and economic fields. ….If the Government want the whole-hearted cooperation of Muslim India, they must place their cards on the table.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 191-192)

Jinnah withdrew the League’s elected members from the Central Legislature to impress upon the Viceroy his dissatisfaction with the government’s behaviour, and he called for a clear declaration of British policy toward all Muslim countries, demanding that Great Britain affirm its non-intervention policy with regard to universal Muslim sovereignty and independence. Jinnah went to Nagpur to address the All-India Muslim Students’ Federation on 26th December 1941. In his address, he said: “…My young friends, today you compare yourselves with what was the position of the

268

Muslims even three years ago…Five years ago it was wretched. Ten years ago you were dead. The Muslim League has given you a goal which in my judgment is going to lead you to the promised land where we shall establish our Pakistan. People may say what they like and talk as they like. Of course he who laughs last, laughs best.” And then he asked: “What is the Congress Party doing in Bengal? The Congress Party has supported new coalition ministry formed by Fazlul Haq, and by virtue of it he was able to form a government and continue to be the Premier. Now I make a Christmas gift of Mr. Haq to Lord Linlithgow! I make another new years gift of the Nawab of Dacca to the Governor of Bengal! I am very glad and I am happy that Muslim India is rid of these men who are guilty of the grossest treachery and betrayal of the Muslims. Both Bengali leaders were expelled from the League, “weeded out” as Jinnah put it. Jinnah went to Calcutta on 13th February 1942 to hoist a Muslim Flag. In his speech there before a large gathering, Jinnah said: “Up to the present moment, the Muslims were absolutely demoralized. Our blood had become cold, our flesh was not capable of working and the Muslim nation was, for all practical purposes, dead. Today, we find that our blood circulation is improving. Our flesh is getting stronger and, above all, our mind is getting more clarified.” Jinnah was driven to Sherganj in East Bengal from Calcutta to preside over the Bengal Provincial Muslim League Conference. Addressing the Conference, Jinnah said: “…We are going through a life and death struggle. We have many opponents. We must stand on our own

269

legs and rely on our own strength if we are to achieve anything in this world.” Cripps Mission: The spread of war to the Pacific and Japanese occupation of South-East Asia had brought India into the front line of battle. She became the keystone of allied defence in the Indian ocean, the principal route for supplies from Britain and the United States to China, and an important source of man-power and war materials for allied forces in the Near and Far East. When Rangoon fell on 7th March 1942, it seemed as if the tide of Japanese conquest would soon be sweeping into Bengal and Madras. On 11th March, Winston Churchill announced in the House of Commons that the War Cabinet had agreed on a plan for India, and that Sir Stafford Cripps, Lord Privy Seal and leader of the House of Commons would be sent to India to ascertain whether this plan would secure a reasonable and practical measure of acceptance and thus promote the concentration of all Indian thought and energies on defence against Japan. Sir Stafford Cripps arrived in Delhi on 23rd March. That day was the second anniversary of Lahore Resolution and it was being celebrated in Delhi in a mammoth public meeting. Addressing the meeting Jinnah said: “I can say without fear of contradiction that the Muslim League stands more firmly for the freedom and independence of this country than any other party…. We are asking for justice and fair play. We have no designs on our sister communities. We want to live in this land as a free and independent nation. We are not a minority but a nation.” Referring to the Cripps Mission,

270

he said: “There is a fear that he is a friend of the Congress. He has enjoyed the hospitality of Jawaharlal Nehru… That is all true but we should not be afraid on that score. Don’t get cold feet… We are prepared to face all consequences if any scheme or solution which is detrimental to the interests of the Muslims is forced upon us. We shall not only not accept it, but resist it to the utmost of our capacity. If we have to die in the attempt we shall die fighting.” After meeting Lord Linlithgow and the members of the Central Government and other high officials, he began a series of conversation with the leaders of all the political parties. The proposals embodied in the draft declaration as explained by him to the press were as follows: 1. In order to achieve earliest possible realization of self-government in India, the British Government propose that steps should be taken to create a new Indian Union which will have the full status of a dominion with the power to secede, if it so chooses, from British Commonwealth. 2. Immediately upon the cessation of the hostilities a constitution-making body shall be set up, representing both British India and the Indian states, and the British Government undertakes to accept and implement the constitution framed by that body on two conditions: (a) Any province or provinces which do not acquiesce in the new constitution will be entitled to frame a constitution of their own, giving them the same full status as the Indian

271

Union; and any Indian state or states shall be similarly free to adhere to the new constitution or not. (b) A treaty shall be negotiated between the British Government and the constitutionmaking body to cover all matters arising out of the complete transfer of responsibility from British to Indian hands. 3. In the meantime, the British Government must retain the control of the defence of India as part of their world war effort, but the task of organizing the military, moral and material resources of India rests with the government of India in co-operation with the people, and to that end they earnestly invite the immediate participation of their leaders in the counsels of their country, of the Commonwalth and the United Nations. The negotiations began on 25th March and ended on 10th April. In the course of these seventeen days, Sir Stafford Cripps interviewed the leaders of all major political parties and Gandhi, who explained that he represented only himself and not the Congress. Sir Stafford’s discussions with the Congress were carried on mainly through Azad and Nehru, but he saw several other members of the Working Committee who were sitting at Delhi throughout the negotiations. Jinnah came alone for the Muslim League. Cripps told Jinnah that he had not taken the Muslim League or Pakistan propaganda very seriously during his last visit to India, but assured him that he has changed his view because of the change in the communal feeling in India and the growth of the Pakistan movement and then gave

272

him the document he had brought from London. Jinnah told Cripps that he will place the matter before his Working Committee and come back to him. Jinnah had already talked to Sir Stafford Cripps during his previous visit to India in March 1940 and he had been disappointed by the results of the meeting. Jinnah had written a letter to Major Gardiner in which he said: “I had a frank talk with Sir Stafford Cripps on his recent visit to India, explaining the Muslim point of view. His expression of agreement with me appeared genuine, but even had he disagreed I feel there was no justification for the complete misrepresentation of my views, amounting to nothing less than deliberate falsehood, which he published in a news paper on his return to England. I am aware that he was not at the time a member of your party, but I thought he occupied an important position in the public, and in his own profession.”
Jinnah-Creator of Pakistan by Hector Bolitho, pg 138)

The

Hindu

Mahasabha

was

represented

by

Savarkar and four other delegates, the Depressed Classes by Dr.Ambedkar and M.C.Rajah, and the Indian Liberals by Sapru and Jayakar. All other parties and communal interests had their say. The Working Committee of the Hindu Mahasabha declared itself more or less satisfied with parts of the British scheme. But the scheme as a whole was rejected mainly because of the non-adherence provisions. A fierce protest against the non-adherence provision came from the Sikhs. Sikhs said: “We shall resist by all possible means separation of the Punjab from the All-India Union. The firmest stand was taken by the representatives of the

273

Depressed Classes who denounced the scheme for its failure to provide the necessary safeguards for them. Their leaders said: “We are convinced that the proposals are calculated to do the greatest harm to the Depressed Classes and are sure to place them under an unmitigated system of Hindu Raj.” Sapru and Jayakar submitted a memorandum in which they said: “The creation of more than one union, howsoever consistent in theory with the principle of selfdetermination, will be disastrous to the lasting interests of the country and its integrity and security.” “Why did you come if this is what you have to offer?” Gandhi said to Cripps. “I would advice you to take the first plane home.” He described the declaration as “a post-dated cheque on a crashing bank.” He left Delhi for Sevagram on 4th April, asking the Congress Working Committee to make up its own mind. The Congress Working Committee ultimately turned down the proposal on 10th April 1942 rejected the Cripps scheme for two reasons. First, it ignored the ninety millions of people in the Indian states, who were to have no voice in shaping the constitution. The states might become barriers to the growth of Indian freedom and secondly, the novel principle of non-accession was a severe blow to the conception of Indian unity. The Congress claimed that, in order to rally the Indian public to a maximum effort of patriotism, there must be an Indian Defence Minister. This was conceded on the British side, but it was held that the Commanderin-Chief could not transfer his major duties to any civilian colleague in the middle of the war. Col. Johnson, special representative of President Roosevelt, arrived on

274

the

scene

to

iron

out

the

differences.

Formulas The

apportioning

responsibility

were

interchanged.

Congress insisted that a convention should be observed that the Viceroy was to treat his new council as a Cabinet and accept its decisions. The Working Committee of the Muslim League issued its following resolution on the Cripps offer shortly after Congress resolved upon rejection: “The Committee, while expressing their gratification that the possibility of Pakistan is recognized by implication by providing for the establishment of two or more independent Unions in India, regret that no alternative proposal is invited. In view of the rigidity of the attitude of His Majesty’s Government with regard to the fundamentals not being open to any modification, the Committee have no alternative but to say that the proposals in the present form are unacceptable …The Musalmans cannot be satisfied by such a Declaration on a vital question affecting their future destiny, and demand a clear and precise pronouncement on the subject. Any attempt to solve the future problem of India by the process of evading the real issue is to court disaster.” Jinnah complained that the talks had been carried on with the Congress leaders over the heads of the Muslims, and other parties had been utterly ignored. Sir Stafford Cripps sent a wire to Churchill: “There is clearly no hope of agreement and on 12th April left Delhi for London in a huff. On 13th April, Gandhi made following comments on the Cripps proposals:

275

“It

is

a

thousand

pities

that

the

British

Government should have sent a proposal for resolving the political deadlock which, on face of it, was too ridiculous to find acceptance anywhere. And it was a misfortune that the bearer should have been Sir Stafford Cripps, acclaimed as a radical among the radicals and a friend of India. I have no doubt about his goodwill. He believed that no one could have brought anything better for India. But he should have known that at least the Congress would not look at dominion status even though it carried the right of secession the very moment it was taken. He knew too that the proposal contemplated the splitting up of India into three parts, each having different ideas of governance. It contemplated Pakistan, and yet not the Pakistan of the Muslim League’s conception. And last of all, it gave no real control over defence to responsible ministers. “It is no use brooding over the past or British mistakes. It is more profitable to look within. The British will take care of themselves, if we will take care of ourselves. Our mistakes or rather our defects are many. Why blame the British for our own limitations? Attainment of an independence is an impossibility till we have solved the communal tangle… There are two ways of solving what has almost become insoluble. The one is the royal way of non-violence, and the other of violence… I suppose the choice has already been made by the chief actors…” “Whether those who believe in the two-nation theory and communal partition of India can live as friends cooperating with one another I do not know. If the vast majority of Muslims regard themselves as a separate

276

nation having nothing in common with the Hindus and others, no power on earth can compel them to think otherwise. And if they want to partition India on that basis, they must have the partition, unless the Hindus want to fight against such a division. So far as I can see, such a preparation is silently going on, onbehalf of both parties. That way lies suicide. Each party will probably want British or foreign aid. In that case, good-bye to independence. Gandhi later wrote: “Sir Stafford has come and gone. How nice it would have been if he did not come with the dismal mission… My firm opinion is that the British should leave India now in the orderly manner and not run the risk that they did in Singapore, Malaya and Burma. The act would mean courage of high order, confession of human limitations, and right doing by India.” In Harijan, he pleaded for the British withdrawal from India.
(Mahatma by D.G.Tendulkar, pg 74-75)

Some pressmen asked Gandhi what could Sir Stafford Cripps have done in the absence of an agreement between the Congress and the League? “Sir Stafford,” Gandhi replied, “could have asked either the Congress or the League to form the Cabinet. If he had done so, probably the party they entrusted with responsibility would have succeeded in having the cooperation of the other party. In any even, the Government would then have dealt with the real representatives of their party rather than having their own nominees. If the Muslims wanted anything-no matter what it is-no power on earth can prevent them from having it. For the condition of refusal will be to

277

fight. Supposing the Muslims ask for some thing, which the non-Muslims do not want to give, it means a fight. This applies to both the communities. But my hope is that some day or other, all parties will come to their senses and consent to go to arbitration.”
(Mahatma by D.G.Tendulkar. pg 87)

On 23rd April, Rajgopalachari addressed a small gathering of his Congress supporters in the Madras Legislature, and carried two resolutions for submission to the All India Congress Committee, First, recommending the acceptance of Pakistan in principle as a basis for settlement between the Congress and the Muslim League. The second resolution requested permission of the All India Congress Committee for the Madras Congress to unite with the Muslim League and other provincial parties to restore popular Government, as a coalition ministry, to Madras. Both the resolutions were passed with overwhelming majority. In his presidential address to the Muslim League at its session held in April at Allahabad, Jinnah said: “… the Musalmans feel deeply disappointed that the entity and the integrity of the Muslim nation has not been expressly recognized… Muslim India will not be satisfied unless to the the right of of national Pakistan self-determination and Muslim and is unequivocally recognized… In order to give the real effect principle His selfSir determination, Majesty’s Government,

Stafford Cripps, will not hesitate to make necessary adjustments on their behalf. Let us hope that there will emerge out of these negotiations a settlement that will be just, honourable, and finally acceptable to all.”

278

The Secretary of State, Mr Amery stated in the House of Commons on 28th April: “Such a national Government as the Congress demanded would have been responsible in the last resort neither to Parliament here under the existing constitution, nor to an agreed and fairly balanced constitution in India, but only to its own majority,-a majority presumably of Congress or, at any rate, Hindus. That demand, whether made by Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru and his collegues, or by the Congress, was the one thing, which the Muslims and other minorities were determined at all costs to reject. They were and are convinced that such a Government would, in fact, prejudge the whole future situation to their detriment. There was, therefore, never any question in our view of conceding that demand because it was, in fact, if not in intention, a demand which precluded all agreed co-operation in India.” Amery added that the main object of the draft declaration was to set at rest India’s suspicions, as to the British Government’s intention. “Our ideal,’ he concluded, remains a United All-India.” The result of the Cripps negotiations, instead of bridging the gulf between the Government and the political parties in India, only served to widen it. The manner in which the negotiations had broken down tended to strengthen the doubts and suspicions in the minds of political leaders that there was no genuine desire on the part of His majesty’s Government to part with power. Quit India: The All-India Congress Committee at its meeting held on 29th April at Allahabad rejected Rajagopalachari’s

279

resolutions by thumping majority and adopted a counterresolution, “That any proposal to disintegrate India by giving liberty to any component State or territorial unit to secede from the Indian Union or Federation will be detrimental to the best interests of the people of the different States and provinces and the country as a whole and the Congress, therefore, cannot agree to any such proposal.” The Committee called upon the people of India to offer complete non-violent non-cooperation to the invading forces and not to render them any assistance. Rajagopalachari launched a drive for the establishment of a national government and for the mobilization of the country for defence. Nehru took serious objection to Rajagopalachari’s drive being detrimental to the interests of the country and said: “It appears to me that he is breaking to pieces the weapon which the Congress have fashioned after 22 years of innumerable sacrifice.” Rajaji resigned his membership from the Congress and the Madras Legislature. Gandhi wrote a series of articles in, “Harijan” in which he urged the British to Quit India. He wrote: “If British left India to her fate, non-violent India would not lose any thing.” He referred to the conditions in India which the people of India were living as a state of ‘ordered anarchy’ and said: “If this ordered anarchy was to be replaced by complete lawlessness in India as a result of the withdrawal of British, he was prepared to take that risk and could only hope that the people would evolve real popular order out of Chaos.” The Congress Working Committee met in Wardha on 14th July and resolved: “…The British rule in India

280

must

end

immediately…Neither

settlement

of

the

communal tangle, nor effective resistance to foreign aggression, was possible while British authority lasted. On the withdrawal of British rule, responsible men and women of the country would come together to form a provisional government representative of all important sections of the people of India… In the alternative, the Congress would be reluctantly compelled to utilize all its accumulated non-violent strength in a widespread struggle, under the leadership of Gandhiji.” Gandhi made an appeal to the Muslims, including believers in Pakistan, to join the mass movement to end British rule. He appealed to the British to declare India free and make the independence a reality. Side by side, he defined his coming movement as an open rebellion which should be as short and swift as possible. “I am lighting my own funeral pyre to end the agony,” he said. As a sharp reaction to the above resolution, Jinnah issued a statement in which he said: “The latest decision of the Congress Working Committee resolving to launch a mass movement if the British do not withdraw from India is the culminating point in the policy and program of Mr. Gandhi and his Hindu Congress of blackmailing the British and coercing them to concede a system of government and transfer of power to that government which would establish a Hindu Raj immediately under the aegis of the British bayonet, thereby throwing the Muslims and other minorities and other interests at the mercy of the Congress Raj.” Two American journalists interviewed Gandhi in Wardha and asked, “What does a free India mean, if, as Mr. Jinnah said, Muslims will not accept Hindu rule?”

281

Gandhi replied: “I have not asked the British to handover India to the Congress or the Hindus. Let them entrust India to God or in modern parlance to anarchy. Then all the parties will fight one another like dogs, or will, when real responsibility faces them, come to a reasonable agreement. I shall expect non-violence to arise out of that chaos.” Gandhi was reminded that until recently he had said there could be no Swaraj without Hindu-Muslim unity, but of late he said that there would be no unity until India has achieved independence. To this Gandhi’s reply was: “Time is a merciless enemy. I have been asking myself why every whole-hearted attempt made by all including myself to reach unity has failed, and failed so completely that I have entirely fallen from grace and I am described by some Muslim papers as the greatest enemy of Islam in India. It is a phenomenon I can only account for by the fact that the third power, even without deliberately wishing it, will not allow real unity to take place. Therefore I have come to the resultant conclusion that the two communities will come together almost immediately after the British power comes to a final end in India.” Jinnah, immediately responded to this by saying: “I am glad that at last Mr. Gandhi has openly declared that unity and Hindu-Muslim settlement can only come after the achievement of India’s independence and has thereby thrown off the cloak that he had worn for the last 22 years.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 206-207)

The Secretary of State Amery in the House of Commons and Stafford Cripps in a broadcast declared that the government would not flinch from taking every

282

possible step to meet the Congress challenge. They said that the demand of the Congress for British withdrawal would, if conceded, completely disrupt the governmental machinery in one of the most vital theatres of the war at a time when every energy was needed for the struggle against the common enemy. They affirmed that the British Government would stand firmly by the broad intentions embodied in the Cripps proposals. “Struggle-eternal struggle, that is my reply to Amery and Stafford Cripps,”declared Nehru “Daily Herald of London wrote: “If you (Congress) persist in demands which are at this moment impossible to grant, you will cripple your cause and humble the influence of us who are your proud and faithful advocates. You will do worse, you will convey to the world the impression that India’s leaders are incapable of distinguishing between the ideal of the United Nations and the petty standards of nationalism; that you rate political strategy higher than the prospect of liberty, equality and fraternity with the progressive peoples of the earth.”
(The Transfer of Power by V.P.Menon, pg 166)

The All India Congress Committee met in Bombay on 7th and 8th August and approved the Working Committee’s resolution. While moving the resolution Jawaharlal Nehru said: “The Congress is plunging into a stormy ocean and it would emerge either with a free India or go down. Unlike in the past, it is not going to be a movement for a few days, to be suspended and talked over. It is going to be a fight to finish.” In seconding the resolution Sardar Patel said:

283

“If America and England were still thinking that they could fight their enemies from India without the cooperation of 400 millions of people they were foolish. It must dawn on the people that this war was a people’s war and they should fight for their country and their freedom.” The next day on 8th August, the resolution was passed “The Committee appeals to the people of India,” the resolution said, “to face the dangers and hardships that will fall to their lot with courage and endurance, and to hold together under the leadership of Gandhiji, and carry out his instructions as disciplined soldiers of Indian freedom.” The resolution further said: “Every Indian who desires freedom and strives for it must be his own guide urging him on along the hard road where there is no resting place and which leads the ultimately All-India to the independence and deliverance of India.” Gandhi congratulated Congress Committee when the resolution was passed by an overwhelming majority and asked the people to imprint a mantra in their hearts-Do or Die. “We shall either free India or die in the attempt,” he said impassionately, “we shall not live to see the perpetuation of our slavery. Take a pledge with God and your conscious as witness, that you will no longer rest till freedom is achieved and will be prepared to lay down your lives in the attempt to achieve it. He who loses his life will gain it; he who will seek to save it shall lose it. Freedom is not for the coward or the faint-hearted.”
(A Centenary History of Indian National Congress: B. N. Pande, pg 50-51)

284

London considered Congress’ resolution as open rebellion, and the War Cabinet authorized Linlithgow, the Viceroy to arrest Gandhi and the members of the Congress Working Committee at any time he deemed appropriate. In the early morning of 9th August, Gandhi, Nehru, Sardar, Azad, Kriplani and all important leaders of the Congress were arrested and the Congress was banned. Serious disorder followed the arrest of Congress leaders. Gandhi’s last instructions conveyed to the nation through Pyarelal were: “Let every non-violent soldier of freedom write out the slogan, ‘Do or Die’ on a piece of paper or cloth, and stick it on his clothes, so that in case he died in the course of offering Satyagraha, he might be distinguished by that sign from other elements who do not subscribe to non-violence.” “The disturbances,” said Churchill, “were crushed with all the weight of the Government…Larger enforcements have reached India and the number of white troops in that country is larger than any time in the British connections.” Later, he stated: “I have not become the King’s first minister in order to preside over the liquidation of the British Empire.” The Working Committee of the All India Muslim League, in a resolution passed at Bombay on 20 th August, condemned the Congress civil disobedience movement as an instrument of forcing the British Government and Muslims to surrender to Congress dictation, and directed Muslims to refrain from participating in it. At the same time it demanded from the British Government an immediate declaration guaranteeing to the Muslims the

285

right of self-determination and a pledge that they will abide by the verdict of a plebiscite of Musalmans and give effect to the Pakistan Scheme. At a subsequent meeting, the League passed a resolution which said that the Muslims of India were a nation and not a minority, they were entitled to autonomous homelands and the areas in the North-West and North-East where they were in a majority. The Muslims themselves should decide their fate by means of plebiscite after the war. The League was ready to participate in a provisional government, provided its post-war claims were not prejudiced thereby; any provisional government so set up was likely to have a decisive voice in the negotiations immediately after the war and therefore the League must have parity in any such government to ensure that its claims were not prejudiced. The Congress movement was condemned as an instrument for coercing both the British and Muslims to surrender to the Congress demands.” The international press asked Jinnah at his Delhi house on 13th September: “If there was any chance of any modification of his party’s demand, what would he do?” Jinnah replied: “If you start by asking for sixteen annas (Indian one Rupee), there is room for bargaining. The Muslim League has never put forward any demand which can by any reasonable The man be characterized stands as for unreasonable. Muslim League

independence for the Hindus and for the Musalmans. The Hindu India has got three-fourths of India in its pocket and it is Hindu India which is bargaining to see if it can get the remaining one-fourth for itself and diddle us out of it.”

286

In October 1942, Rajagopalachari suggested a plan according to which the Viceroy should act as the Crown would in a crisis in England and select the most popular and most responsible leaders of India to assist him in running what would in effect be a national government. Five important Congressmen should first be chosen, and then Jinnah could be invited to join this government with men of his choice. There might, additionally, be three others to represent the lesser minorities.” Jinnah immediately dismissed the plan.
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 211)

The year 1942 ended with a letter from Gandhi to Linlithgow in which Gandhi hinted that he would have to go on fast unless the Viceroy could convince him of his errors. On 13th January 1943, Lord Linlithgow replied to Gandhi: “If I am right in reading your letter to mean that in the light of what has happened you wish to retrace your steps and disassociate yourself from the policy of last summer, you have only to let me know and I will at once consider the matter further.” Replying, Gandhi placed the whole blame for the events that had taken place since 9th August at the door of the Government of India. He put two alternatives to the Viceroy: i. If you want me to act singly, convince me that I was wrong and I will make amends; ii If you want me to make proposal on behalf of the Congress you should put me among the Working Committee members. The Viceroy was not prepared to accept either of these suggestions; instead, he insisted on having from Gandhi not only an admission of guilt but appropriate assurance with regard to the future.

287

Gandhi replied that it was the Government that had goaded the people to the point of madness…If then I cannot get soothing balm for my pain, I must resort to the law prescribed for the Satyagrahi, namely, a fast according to capacity. He gave notice that the fast would begin on 9th February and that it would continue for 21 days. Gandhi began his fast on 10th February. The news of his fast caused deep anxiety. A shadow of gloom descended upon the country, as it happened during the great ordeal he had gone through the Yervada prison in 1932. All party leaders Conference was held in Delhi on 19th February under the presidentship of Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru. About 300 representatives of all communities attended. Jinnah, who was invited for the Conference flatly refused to attend. In reply to the invitation, he said: “The situation arising out of Gandhi’s fast is really a matter for Hindu leaders to consider and advice him accordingly.” The Conference passed a strong resolution urging unconditional release of Gandhi and cabled it to Churchill, whose reply was: “The Government of India decided last August that Mr. Gandhi and other leaders of the Congress must be detained for reasons which have been fully explained and are well understood…There can be no justification for discriminating between Mr. Gandhi and other Congress leaders. The responsibility therefore rests entirely with Gandhi himself.” All Parties Conference was again held in the second week of March. They decided that a deputation headed by Rajagopalachari may call on the Viceroy to request him to grant permission to meet Gandhi in the

288

jail. The Viceroy did not receive the deputation, but sent his reply in which he said: “Nothing positive has emerged as a result of the talks between Gandhi and his friends during his fast and that there was no reason to believe that he was any more ready to repudiate the policy as a result of which the Congress leaders were under detention. So long as Gandhi’s attitude and that of the Congress remained unchanged, special facilities for contact with him or with other Congress leaders could not be given. Rajagopalachari characterized the Viceroy’s reply as revealing the Versailles spirit wishing to humiliate the Congress and others and influenced by passion and prejudice. The Viceroy backed by the authorities at home did not budge an inch. He described the fast as ‘political blackmail.’ Rajagopalachari was permitted to see Gandhi during the last four days of his fast. Rajaji placed before Gandhi a formula for a settlement between the Congress and the Muslim League. The salient features of the formula, which came to be known as, “Rajaji Formula” were as follows: 1. Subject to the terms set out below as regards the constitution for free India, the Muslim League endorses the Indian demand for independence and will cooperate with the Congress in the formation of a Provisional Interim Government for the transitional period. 2. After the termination of the war, a Commission shall be appointed for demarcating contagious districts in the Northwest and East of India,

289

wherein the Muslim population is in absolute majority. In the areas thus demarcated, a plebiscite of all the inhabitants held on the basis of adult suffrage, or other practicable franchise shall ultimately decide the issue of separation from Hindustan. If the majority deciding in favour of a Sovereign State separate from Hindustan, such decision shall be given effect to without prejudice to the right of districts on border to choose to join either State. 3. It will be open to all parties to advocate their points of view before the plebiscite is held. 4. In the event of separation, mutual agreements shall be entered into for safeguarding Defence, Commerce and Communications and for other essential purposes. 5. Any transfer of population shall only be on an absolutely voluntary basis. 6. These terms shall be binding only in case of transfer by Britain of full power and responsibility for the governance of India. Gandhi gave his approval to the Rajaji Formula. Armed with this approval, Rajaji discussed the Formula with Jinnah. But Jinnah expressed his inability to approve of the Formula as it did not meet the League’s full demand for Pakistan. In a speech before the Muslim League Council, he characterized it as a “shadow and husk, maimed, mutilated, and moth-eaten Pakistan.” Gandhi broke his fast on 3rd March. The annual session of the Muslim League was held in Delhi at the end of April. A map of Pakistan adorned

290

the dais, and a banner flew over it reading, “Freedom of India lies in Pakistan.” Jinnah wore a white sherwani with a gold button engraved with “P” pinned to his starched collar. He was greeted with tremendous ovation and cheering as he entered the packed pandal. With his League ministries now running Bengal, the Punjab, Sind, and Assam, Jinnah insisted: “This is only the starting point… In the North-West Frontier Province my information is-and it is based on very reliable sources that the Muslim public is entirely with the Muslim League. Do not forget the minority provinces. It is they who have spread the light when there was darkness in the majority provinces. It is they who were the spearheads that the Congress wanted to crush… We have got a great deal to do. Our goal is clear; our demands are clear.” Jinnah then reviewed the history of Hindu-Muslim conflicts from the dawn of the century, after which he indulged in a blistering attack on Gandhi and his tactics, accusing the Mahatma of wanting to turn the whole of India into his Hindu ashram. He went so far as to suggest a new summit with Gandhi, however, arguing: “No body would welcome it more than myself, if Mr. Gandhi is even now really willing to come to a settlement with the Muslim League on the basis of Pakistan. Let me tell you it would be the greatest day for both Hindus and Musalmans. Openly before the mass audience that listened to his presidential address, Jinnah said: “…If they have got any honest and capable agents they ought to be kept informed in London. I once more draw the attention of the British Government to this fact.

291

It is a very serious situation indeed, and I inform them from this platform that the cup of bitterness, and disappointment-not to use any stronger language-at the shabby treatment meted out to Muslim India is in danger to them…The Muslim League calls upon the British Government to come forward, without any further delay, with an unequivocal declaration guaranteeing to the Musalmans the right of self-determination, and to pledge themselves that they will abide by the verdict of a plebiscite on the lines of the resolution passed at the Muslim League Session in Lahore in 1940. “I say to the Musalmans, 100 million Musalmans are with us. When I say 100 million Musalmans, I mean that 99 % of them are with us, leaving aside some who are traitors, cranks, supermen or lunatics-an evil from which no society or nation is free. The way in which I see them is that the phoenix-like rise and regeneration of Muslim India from the very ashes of its ruination is a miracle. The people who had lost everything and who were placed by providence between the two stones of a mill, not only came into their own in a very short time, but became, after the British, socially the most solid, militarily most virile, and politically the most decisive factor in modern India. Now it is time to take up the constructive program to build up this nation so that it can march on the path of our goal to Pakistan. The goal is near, stand united, persevere and march forward.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 217-219)

Jinnah expressed his profound dissatisfaction with the British attitude. He urged Provincial Leagues to place themselves on a war footing in preparation for what is to come; he castigated the capitalists and pampered the

292

masses by his references to social justice and economic reorganization; he tried to impress upon the Provincial Premiers the fact that their own future lies only in following his lead and above all he, in order to show his bona fides to the neutral world, extended an open and almost final invitation to the Congress to approach him for a settlement if it so desires. The main resolution regretted the Government’s failure to guarantee Muslim self-determination, and warned the Government that the imposition of any kind of federal constitution would be forcibly resisted, and exhorted Muslims to face the effort and sacrifice required to reach the cherished goal of Pakistan. Jinnah visited Baluchistan in July to address the League’s third provincial conference. In his address, Jinnah exhorted the Muslims of Baluchistan to shake off their lethargy and march in line with their nation. He appealed them to give up mutual jealousies and sectional interests and differences over small things, petty quarrels and tribal notions. The following day he addressed the same conference after it had passed all the resolutions he had advocated. He reiterated his pre-battle plan for Pakistan, seeking first to lay the foundation of reforms and growth, later to press his separatist demands. To the students in his audience he cautioned: “Do not run after cheap slogans or catchwords. Concentrate your whole attention on education. Get equipped and qualify yourself for action. The better you are equipped the brighter are your chances of success.” A meeting of the Working Committee of the Muslim League was held in Delhi in November. Addressing the meeting, Jinnah said: “The constitution of the Muslim

293

League is the most democratic that could be framed. There is no Muslim to whom the doors of the Muslim League are not open. If the Musalmans are dissatisfied with the leader, the remedy lies in their hand. They can remove him, if they so desire by exercising their rights under the constitution of the party, but if they try to settle things by force and violence, nothing but bloodshed will ensue.” The 31st session of the Muslim League was held in Karachi in December. Some 10,000 delegates had gathered. Jinnah was greeted with thunderous shouts, “Quaid-I-Azam Zindabad,” “the Conqueror of Congress Zindabad. He told his audience: “When a man is sick and almost dying, he has not got the energy either to complain or to ask for anything. That was the condition of Muslim India seven years ago; but today, the sick man has recovered from his sick bed. He has acquired consciousness. He is not only convalescent but he is in a position to move about. Now he has got so many suggestions and proposals to make, so many disputes and so many quarrels to settle. It is a good sign, provided it is kept within limits… I am thankful to God that Muslim India is awake-I am thankful that Muslim India has regained consciousness. I am thankful that Muslim India is taking interest in things around it, not only in India, but through out the world.” By February 1944, Jinnah was back in Bombay. He urged the Muslim Students’ Federation to erect pillars of hard work, industry and perseverance upon which the edifice of Pakistan could be built. He alluded to suggestions made that he should be made the First Prime Minister of India, calling them mere “camouflage” made

294

in order to mislead and confuse the Muslims. Jinnah returned to Delhi at the end of the month for the opening session of the Assembly, where Wavell’s maiden speech as Viceroy stressed the “geographical unity” of India as central to its postwar constitution. Jinnah was outraged by that formulation and viewed it as nothing less than an attempted negation of Cripps’s implicit promise of Pakistan. He launched a fresh attack in the Assembly upon the Government’s budget to remind Wavell of the League’s mustering powers a to prevent the Government Assembly from Central Legislative majority.

Speaking to the Aligarh Union that month, Jinnah called the Viceroy’s address provocative and thoughtless of the Muslim opposition, adding: “Lord Wavell like his predecessor has started fishing the Congress waters, Lord Linlithgow hopelessly failed, but soldier-Viceroy thinks that he would succeed where his predecessor had failed in landing a big fish or a number of small ones sufficient for his purpose. This has created deep resentment throughout Muslim India.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 228)

A British spy attending all the Muslim League sessions reported: “Jinnah’s speeches both in the meetings of the Working Committee and the Subject Committees held in camera and in the Open Session have confirmed impressions that of late his mind has been passing through a certain process of change. He has become more aggressive, more challenging and more authoritative. The reason appears to be consciousness of power lately acquired and of certain old injuries which can now be avenged therewith.” Gandhi-Jinnah Talks:

295

Gandhi wrote a letter to Jinnah from the Aga Khan Palace, where he was confined. The Government did not forward the letter to Jinnah. However, it made the substance of the letter available to Jinnah. After receipt of the substance, Jinnah declared that this was not the kind of letter, which he had wanted from Gandhi. He wanted Gandhi first to agree to the Muslim League demand for partition and then write to him. “This letter of Mr. Gandhi can only be construed as a move on his part to embroil the Muslim League to come into clash with the British Government solely for the purpose of his release,” said Jinnah. Gandhi wrote to Jinnah again on 17th July 1944 addressing him as “Brother Jinnah” and signing the letter as “your brother Gandhi.” Gandhi in his letter wrote: “…Let us meet whenever you wish. Do not regard me as an enemy of Islam or of Indian Muslims. I have always been a servant and friend to you and mankind. Do not dismiss me.” Jinnah promptly replied that he would be happy to receive him at his residence in Bombay after his return from Kashmir sometime in the middle of August 1944. Gandhi’s talks with Jinnah began on 9th September 1944, and continued for eighteen days at the latter’s residence. The whole period was covered with an exchange of letters, and even Rajaji commented: “The talks are to get round you (Gandhiji) and the correspondence is in anticipation of failure.” Jinnah’s Statement: Jinnah issued his statement to the press on 27th September in which he said:

296

“Mr. Gandhi from the very commencement of our talks made it clear that he had approached me in his individual capacity and that he represented no one but himself. However, he assured me that he was open to conversion to the Muslim League Lahore Resolution of March 1940. “Without prejudice to my objection that in order to reach any settlement, negotiations can only be carried on properly when the other side is also fully represented and vested with authority. In deference to Mr. Gandhi’s wishes I agreed to the task of persuading and converting him to the fundamentals of the Lahore Resolution. “I have placed before him everything and every aspect of the Muslim point of view in the course of our prolonged talks and correspondence, and we discussed all the pros and cons generally, and I regret to say that I have failed in my task of converting Mr. Gandhi. “We have, therefore, decided to release to the press the correspondence that has passed between us. Nevertheless, we hope that the public will not feel embittered, and we trust that this is not the final end of our effort.” Gandhi’s Statement: Gandhi addressed the Press Conference and issued the following statement: “It is a matter of deep regret that we two could not reach an agreement. But there is no cause for disappointment. The break down is only so-called. It is an adjournment Sine die. Each one of us must now talk to the public and put our view points before them. If we do so dispassionately and if the public co-operate, we reach a solution of the seemingly insoluble at an early

297

date. My experience of the previous three weeks confirms me in the view that the presence of a third party hinders the solution. A mind enslaved cannot act as if it was free. I need not impute base motives to the rulers to prove what seems to me to be an axiomatic truth. Nevertheless, I am going to continue to work for the solution as I have been during these three weeks. The questions for consideration are simple. Has the Rajaji Formula or mine made a reasonable approach to the Lahore Resolution? If they or either of them is such an approach, all parties, and especially the members of the Muslim League, should ask the Quaid-I-Azam to revise his opinion. If Rajaji and I have stultified the Lahore Resolution we should be educated.”

Reactions on Gandhi-Jinnah Talks: Maulana Abul Kalam Azad: “Gandhiji’s approach to Jinnah was a great blunder. It gave a new and added importance to Jinnah, which he later exploited fully. Jinnah had lost much of his political importance after he left the Congress in twenties. It was largely due to Gandhiji’s acts of commission and omission that Jinnah regained his importance in Indian political life. In fact, it is doubtful if Jinnah could have ever achieved a supremacy, but for Gandhiji’s attitude. Large sections of Indian Muslims were doubtful about Jinnah and his policy, but when they found that Gandhiji was continuously running after him and entreating him, many of them developed a new respect for Jinnah. They also thought that Jinnah was

298

perhaps the best man for getting advantageous terms in the communal settlement. “It was Gandhiji, who first gave currency to the title Quaid-I-Azam or great leader as applied to Mr. Jinnah. Gandhij had in his camp a foolish but wellintentioned woman called Amtus Salam. She had seen in some Urdu papers a reference to Jinnah as Quaid-IAzam. When Gandhiji was writing to Jinnah asking for interview, she told him that the Urdu papers called Jinnah Quaid-I-Azam and he should use the same form of address. Without pausing to consider the implications of his action, Gandhiji addressed Jinnah as Quaid-IAzam. This letter was soon after published in the press. When Indian Muslims saw that Gandhiji also addressed Jinnah as Quaid-I-Azam, they felt that he must really be so. When in July 1944, I read the report that Gandhiji was corresponding with Jinnah and going to Bombay to meet him, I told my collegues that Gandhiji was making a great mistake. His action would not help to solve but on the contrary would aggravate the Indian political situation. Later events proved that my apprehensions were correct. Jinnah exploited the situation fully and built up his own position, but he did not say or do anything, which could in any way help the cause of Indian freedom.”
(India Wins Freedom by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, pg 96-97)

Dr. K.M. Munshi: “Gandhiji, I felt, was committing a mistake in seeking an interview with Jinnah, who was inflexible in his objective. Rajaji’s formula envisaged Pakistan with a transfer of population. If Gandhiji had been his normal self physically, or if Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Patel

299

had been with him, I am sure he would not have anything to do with Rajaji formula. He was feeling lonely, and the deep void created in his life by the death of Kasturba and Mahadev Desai had its effect on him. “Had Rajaji known Jinnah better, he would have seen that the latter’s object in granting an interview to Gandhiji was only to secure a spectacular triumph which would add to his prestige as the dominating factor in Indian politics. “As I look back, I see that if settlement had taken place in 1944, Jinnah would have got away with the Punjab, Bengal and Assam, with a corridor from East to West Pakistan and without Mountbatten to usher it with prompt effectiveness.
(Pilgrimage to Freedom by K.M.Munshi, pg 91-92)

Gandhi-Jinnah talks were useful to Jinnah only in so far as they raised his prestige with his own following. Simla Conference: Lord Wavell was convinced that the deadlock in India could be broken only by a demarche by the third party, the British Government or himself as a proconsul. He wrote a letter to Winston Churchill on 24th October 1944 in which he said: “…I feel very strongly that the future of India is the problem on which the British Commonwealth and the British reputation will stand or fall in the post war period. Our prestige and prospects in Burma, Malya, China and the Far East generally are entirely subject to what happenes in India. If we can secure India as a friendly partner in the British Commonwealth our predominant influence in these countries will, I think, be assured; with a lost and hostile India, we are likely to be

300

reduced in the East to the position of commercial bagman. “The present Government of India cannot continue indefinitely, or even for long. Though ultimate responsibility still rests with His Majesty’s Government, His Majesty’s Government has no longer to take effective action. We shall drift increasingly into situation-financial, economic and political- for which India herself will be responsible but for which His Majesty’s Government will get the discredit. “If our aim is to retain India as a willing member of the British Commonwealth, we must make some imaginative and constructive move without delay. We have every reason to mistrust and dislike Gandhi and Jinnah, and their followers. But the Congress and the League are the dominant parties in Hindu and Muslim India, and will remain so. Even if Gandhi and Jinnah disappeared tomorrow I can see no prospect of our having more reasonable people to deal with. We have had to negotiate with similar rebel before e.g., De Valera and Zaghlul.” Wavell proposed: “that a fresh start should be initiated as early as possible. Since India could not be any longer held down by force, he felt the necessity of installing a provisional Government, and of devising means to reach a constitutional settlement. Unless steps were taken to show a change of attitude in a friendly direction to convince the educated Indians that the British were sincere in their intentions, the deep-rooted feeling of suspension, mistrust and enmity might result in total chaos.”

301

The Viceroy informed the Prime Minister that the view that something must be done before long was the considered opinion of the Commander-in-chief, of all the eleven provincial governors, and of all the senior members of the Indian Civil Service with whom he had consulted. He appealed to Churchill not to ignore the weight of the entire British official opinion in this regard. Wavell’s words, however, fell on Churchill’s deaf ears. He showed no sign of having been moved by the Viceroy’s logic and the Secretary of State informed him in December 1944 that the War Cabinet would make no move about India until the Viceroy came home and convinced them of the wisdom of such a move. The Viceroy was ultimately summoned to London. He left Delhi on 20th March, 1945 accompanied by V.P. Menon and Evan Jenkins. Churchill and Amery discussed Indian problem with the Viceroy. Churchill opened his mind to suggest that he favoued the partition of India into Hindustan, Pakistan and Princestan.
(A Centenary History of Indian Congress: B.N.Pande, pg 66-67 & 70)

After discussion in 26 sittings from 26th March to 31st May 1945, Wavell returned to India on 5th June and made the following announcement through broadcast on 14th June: “…The new constitution must be framed as declared in 1942 by the Indians. In the meantime Government is anxious to secure cooperation of all communities and sections of the Indian people in carrying on the war with Japanese and in planning the post-war economic development.

302

“The Viceroy will call a conference of party leaders and Provincial Premiers and ex-Premiers to submit to him the names from which he can select the persons for the new Executive Council.” Mr Amery, the Secretary of State for India made the following announcement on the same day in the House of Commons: “His Majesty’s Government are most anxious to make contribution that is practicable to the breaking of the political deadlock in India. While that deadlock lasts not only political but social and economic progress is being hampered. “All that is urgently required to be done for agricultural and industrial development and for the peasants and workers of India cannot be carried through unless the whole-hearted cooperation of every community and section of the Indian people is forthcoming. “His Majesty’s Government have therefore considered whether there is something which they could suggest in this interim period, under the existing constitution, pending the formulation by Indians of their future constitutional arrangements which will enable the main communities and parties to cooperate more closely together and with the British to benefit the people of India as a whole. “It is proposed that the Executive Council should be re-constituted and that the Viceroy should in future make his selection for nomination to the Crown for appointment to his Executive Council from amongst the leaders of Indian political life at the Centre and in the Provinces, in proportions which would give a balanced

303

representation to the main communities, including equal proportions of Muslims and caste-Hindus. “The Viceroy will call into conference a number of leading Indian politicians, who are the heads of the most important political parties, or who have had recent experience as Prime Ministers of Provinces, together with a few others of special experience and authority. The Viceroy intends to put before this conference the proposal that the Executive Council should be re-constituted as above stated and to invite from the members of the conference a list of names. Out of these, he would choose the future members whom he would recommend for appointment by His majesty to the Viceroy’s Council. “The members of the Executive Council would be Indians with the exception of the Viceroy and the Commander-in-Chief, who would retain his position as War Members. This is essential so long as the defence of India remains a British responsibility. “The Viceroy has been authorized by His Majesty’s Government to place this proposal before the Indian leaders. His Majesty’s Government trust that the leaders of the Indian communities will respond. For the success of such a plan must depend upon its acceptance in India and the degree to which the responsible Indian politicians are prepared to cooperate with the object of making it a workable interim arrangement. “The plan now suggested gives the utmost progress practicable within the present constitution. None of the changes suggested will in any way prejudice or prejudge the essential form of the future permanent constitution or constitutions of India.

304

“His Majesty’s Government feel certain that, given goodwill and genuine desire to co-operate on all sides, both British and Indians, these proposals can make a genuine step forward in the collaboration of the British and Indian peoples towards Indian self-government and can assert the rightful position, and strengthen the influence, of India in the counsels of the nations.”
(Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pg 544-547)

King, while proroguing the Parliament on 15th June expressed the hope that the invitation extended to Indian political leaders would be accepted, so that the immediate task might be undertaken with the full cooperation of all sections of Indian public opinion. In accordance with the announcement a conference was held at Simla from 25th June to 14th July 1945 under the Chairmanship of the Viceroy Lord Wavell. Invitation was extended to 21 political leaders of all shades. The Viceroy in his introductory speech said: “The statesmanship, wisdom and goodwill of all of us, is here on trial, not only in the eyes of India but before the whole world. It was necessary to rise above the level of old prejudices and enmities and of party and sectional advantages and to think of the good of the four hundred million people of India…” By the end of second day the conference had agreed on certain principles like representation for minorities, whole-hearted support to the war effort and continuance of the reconstituted Executive Council under the Government of India Act 1935 till the end of the war. Differences, however, arose about the composition of the Executive Council. Jinnah demanded that the Congress could nominate all the Hindu members but all the

305

Muslim members must be nominees of the Muslim League. Azad vehemently opposed and said: “Congress has approached all political problems from a national point of view and recognized no distinction between Hindus and Muslims on political issues. It could not in any circumstances agree to be an organization of Hindus alone. The Congress should have freedom to nominate any Indian it liked regardless of whether he was a Hindu or a Muslim or a Christian, or a Parsi, or a Sikh. Congress should participate on the basis of Indian nationhood or not participate at all. So far as the Muslim League was concerned, it was for it to decide who should be its nominees.”
(India Wins Freedom by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, pg 117) 116-

The Congress wanted the League to accommodate two non-League Muslims within its quota as the Congress was accommodating the same number of nonCongress men within its quota. When the conference met on 29th June, the Viceroy announced that since the parties were unable to come to an agreement, he would use his personal offices to resolve the differences. He asked all interests represented in the conference to send him lists of persons they would like to be selected for joining the national Government. He would add to them some names himself and after scrutinizing all the names, and after consulting with the parties concerned, he would try to arrive at a list, which would be generally acceptable to the conference. Jinnah was not agreeable to the Viceroy’s proposal. He first wanted to know whether, if the list sent, the viceroy would accept the League panel en bloc.

306

The Viceroy replied that he could give no such guarantee beforehand. It was his function to do the final selection. But the conference would be given opportunity to discuss and finally accept or reject the names recommended by him. Jinnah next asked whether the Viceroy will still proceed with his proposal if one of the parties finally rejected it, to which the Viceroy replied that he could not commit himself in advance as to what he would do in the contingency envisaged. Finally, when the Viceroy asked Jinnah point blank whether the League would submit the list of names or not, Jinnah answered that he was there only in his individual capacity; he would need the Viceroy’s proposal in writing to place it before his Working Committee for a definite reply. Jinnah was told that he would have it. Jinnah later wrote to Wavell: “The Working Committee of the Muslim League desires to point out that when a similar proposal was made by your predecessor, Lord Linlithgow, the Working Committee opposed it and, when its objections were brought to the notice of Linlithgow, he dropped the proposal and informed: ‘the selection of representatives will be based in the case of Muslim League not on a panel formally submitted, but on confidential discussion between the leader of the party concerned and the Viceroy.’ The Working Committee, therefore, is of the opinion that the procedure settled on the previous occasion should be followed so far as the Muslim League is concerned.” Jinnah further wrote: “The working Committee desires me to state that it regrets very much to note that Your Excellency is not able to give assurance that all the

307

Muslim members of the proposed Executive Council will be selected from the Muslim League, and in the circumstances, I regret, I am not in a position to send the names on behalf of the Muslim League for inclusion in the proposed Executive Council”
(Mahatma Gandhi-the Last Phase by Pyarelal, pg 135- 136)

By 7th July, the Congress and the other parties submitted their lists to the Viceroy. Congress list included representatives of all major parties, including Jinnah and two other members of the League; and the names of only five congressmen were submitted, two of whom were Azad and Asaf Ali. Azad made it explicit that the inclusion of those two Muslims in the Congress panel was a matter of principle. He said: “the Congress is essentially a national organization, and cannot possibly be a party to any arrangement, howsoever, temporary it may be, that prejudices its national character and tends to impair its growth of nationalism, and reduces the Congress indirectly to a communal body.”
Mahatma by D.G.Tendulkar, Vol. VII, pg 10)

On 11th July, Wavell told Jinnah that he was prepared to include in the Council four members of the Muslim League, together with a non-League Muslim from the Punjab, all of whom he named, adding that if Mr. Jinnah wanted to substitute other League names he would consider them-indeed he would be glad if Mr. Jinnah himself would serve. But Jinnah refused even to discuss the names unless he could be given the absolute right to select all Muslims and some guarantee that any decision which the Muslims opposed in the Council could only be passed by a two-thirds majority-in fact a kind of

308

communal veto. Wavell told Jinnah that these conditions were entirely unacceptable. At the last meeting of the conference on 4th July, Jinnah claimed parity inside the Council with all other parties combined. “If he really meant this,”commented Wavell, “it shows that Jinnah had never at any time an intention of accepting the offer, and it is difficult to see why he came to Simla at all.”
(The Origins of Partition of India: Anita Inder Singh, pg 122123)

Wavell did not want the conference to break down. He proposed to send his own list of nominees to Amery for approval. He then wanted to show the list to Jinnah and other party leaders. If either the League or the Congress or both rejected the list, he would close the conference and disclose the names put forward by him in a broadcast. At the fifth and the last session of the conference on 14th July, the Viceroy accepted the full responsibility for the failure of the Conference and made a statement in which he said: “On 29th June I asked the parties to let me have lists of names, and said that I would do what I could to produce a solution acceptable to the leaders and the conference. I received lists from all parties represented, except the European Group, who decided not to send the list and the Muslim League. I was, however, determined that the conference should not fail until I have made every possible effort to bring it to a successful ending. I therefore, made my provisional selections including certain Muslim League names, and I have every reason to believe that if these selections had been acceptable here,

309

they would have been acceptable to His Majesty’s Government. “My selection would, I think, have given a balanced and efficient Executive Council, whose composition would have been reasonably fair to all parties. I did not find it possible, however, to accept the claims of any party in full. When I explained my solution to Jinnah, he told me that it was not acceptable to the Muslim League, and he was so decided that I felt it would be useless to continue the discussions. In the circumstances, I did not show my selections as a whole to Mr. Jinnah and there was no object in showing them to the other leaders. “The conference has therefore failed. Nobody can regret this more than I do myself. …I propose to take a little time to consider in what way I can best help India after the failure of the conference. You can all help best by refraining from recriminations. …Until I see my way more clearly than I do now, it may be difficult, perhaps impossible, to suggest any new move… Do not any of you be discouraged by this set back. We shall overcome our difficulties in the end. The future greatness of India is not in doubt.”
(The Transfer of Power: V.P.Menon, pg 242-243)

Jinnah in a statement characterized the Wavell Plan as a ‘snare’ and ‘a death warrant’ for the Muslim League because, even if all the Muslims in Government were to be the Muslim Leaguers, they would still be in a minority of one-third in the Cabinet. “The representatives of all the minorities,” he said, “would in actual practice, invariably vote against us in the Government.” Previously, Jinnah used to say that the Muslim League was the champion and protector of all minorities in India,

310

and the Congress represented not even Hindus but casteHindus only. But now he said: “All other minorities, such as Scheduled Castes, Sikhs, and Christians have the same goal as the Congress. Their goal and ideology is of a united India. Ethnically and culturally, they are very closely knitted to Hindu society.” Jinnah blamed all except himself and his men for the failure of the Simla conference. “There was,” he said, “the combination who consisting for of the Gandhi-Hindu national Congress stand India’s Hindu

independence as one India, and the latest exponents of geographical unity, Lord Wavell and Glancy-Khizr, who are bent upon creating disruption among the Musalmans in the Punjab.” In a penetrating analysis of Jinnah’s attitude at the conference, M.R.Jayakar wrote to Gandhi: “…True to his habit, intensified by frequent successes, Jinnah swallows the concessions Muslims have received, viz, parity between Hindus and Muslims and now wants parity between Muslims and all other interests put together, i.e. 50 for Muslims, 50 for all the rest of India-a mathematical monstrosity that 27 equals 73. He is in no hurry to attain freedom and would demand for its attainment a price which would almost render nugatory.”
(Mahatma Gandhi-the Last Phase: Pyarelal, Vol.II, pg 137)

it

Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, in his book, “India Wins Freedom” says: “If the conference had not broken down because of Jinnah’s opposition, the result would have been that Muslims who constituted only about 25 % of total population of India, would have had seven representatives in the Council of fourteen. This is

311

evidence of the generosity of the Congress and also throws in lurid light the stupidity of the Muslim League. The League was supposed to be the guardian of Muslim interests and yet it was because of its opposition that the Muslims of India were denied a substantial share in the Government of Undivided India.” “The abandonment of the Wavell Plan undoubtedly strengthened the position of Jinnah and the League, at a time when their fortunes were none too good. It weakened the position of those Muslims who had been opposing the League, particularly the Unionist Party in the Punjab, and since it was clear that Jinnah could alone deliver goods, the wavering and middle-of-the-road Muslim politicians tended to gravitate to the Muslim League… The Simla Conference afforded a last opportunity to the forces of nationalism to fight a rearguard section to preserve the integrity of the country, and when the battle was lost the waves of communalism quickly engulfed it. Only the Hobson’s Choice of Partition was left.” (Transfer of Power: V.P.Menon, pg 250-251) K.M.Munshi in his book, Pilgrimage to Freedom said: “The Simla Conference changed the course of our political development. The British Government lost its initiative and was hardly counted as a party to any political settlement. Wavell’s personal prestige declined. The Congress, which had made the genuine attempt to make the conference a success lost whatever faith it had in the British Government. Jinnah’s position as the sole determining factor in India’s political fortunes, however, remained unshaken.” General Elections:

312

The breakdown of the Simla Conference was followed by landslide victory of the Labour Party at the general elections in England. As a result, Winston Churcill’s care-taker Government was replaced on 26th July 1945 by Labour Government with Clement Richard Attlee as Prime Minister and Lord Pethic Lawrence as Secretary of State for India. Lord Wavell made the following announcement on 19
th

September 1945 after consulting the Secretary of “His Majesty’s Government are determined to do

State for India and the India Committee of the Cabinet: their utmost to promote in conjunction with the leaders of India the early realization of full self-government in India. “Elections to the Central and Provincial Legislatures, will be held during the coming cold weather. Thereafter, His Majesty’s Government earnestly hope that ministerial responsibility will be accepted by political leaders in all provinces. “It is the intention of His Majesty’s Government to convene as soon as possible a constitution-making body, and as a preliminary step they have authorized me to undertake, immediately after elections, discussions with the representatives of the Legislative Assemblies in the provinces to ascertain whether the proposals contained in the 1942 declaration are acceptable or whether some alternative or modified scheme is preferable. Discussions will also be undertaken with the representatives of the Indian States with a view to ascertaining in what way they can best take their part in the constitution-making body.

313

“His

Majesty’s

Government

have

further

authorized me, as soon as the results of the provincial elections are published, to take steps to bring into being an Executive Council which will have the support of the main Indian parties. In a message broadcast on the same day, Prime Minister Attlee said: “Although the Cripps proposals had not been accepted by the Indian parties, the British Government were acting in the spirit of those proposals. He gave an assurance that the British Government would not try to introduce into the proposed treaty any matter which was incompatible with the interests of India, and appealed to Indians to make united effort to evolve a constitution which would be accepted as fair by all parties and interests in India.” The All India Congress Committee held its meeting on 21st September in Bombay and passed a resolution, which characterized Lord Wavell’s proposal as vague, inadequate and unsatisfactory. However, decided to contest elections to demonstrate the will of the people, especially on the issue of the immediate transfer of power. The Muslim League announced to fight the elections on the issue of Pakistan and the claim of the League to represent all Muslims. Jinnah declared that their demand was that the provinces of the Punjab, Sind, North-West Frontier Province, Baluchistan, Bengal and Assam in their entirety should be formed into a separate Sovereign State to be known as Pakistan. The Congress leaders declared that they would make no more approaches to the Muslim League, but would contact the Muslim masses direct and would try to

314

reassure them by appropriate means through the election manifesto. The Congress Working Committee, accordingly prepared manifesto and issued it. The results of the elections clearly showed that the Congress and the Muslim League were the only parties that counted in India. Dr.K.M.Munshi said: “The result proved that the Muslim League dominated the Muslims as completely as the Congress dominated Hindus. They should have been an eye opener to some of our leaders who would not believe that Jinnah had acquired complete hold over the Muslim masses.”
(Partition of India-Legend & Reality by H.M.Seervai, pg 39)

The Viceroy addressed the newly elected Central Legislature on 28th January, in which he emphasized the determination of His Majesty’s Government to establish a new Executive Council and to form a constitution-making body as soon as possible. On Viceroy’s address, Jinnah declared that the Muslim League was not prepared to consider any thing short of immediate recognition of the Pakistan demand and that the League would not be prepared to cooperate in any interim arrangements until this principle has been made clear beyond all doubts and until it had been decided that there would be two constitution-making bodies, one for the Pakistan areas and the other for the rest of India. Subsequently in an interview to the press, Jinnah added that if the British carried out their intention of calling a single constitution-making body, the only result would be revolt through out India.
(The Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pg 266)

315

Lord Wavell drew up a plan of action, the immediate objectives of which were: i. To form a constitution-making workable and body, which would produce ii. To a acceptable constitution. form

Governments in the provinces on a coalition basis as far as possible. With regard to the Muslim League, Wavell indicated that if Jinnah refused to participate in the interim League. Cabinet Mission: Lord Pethic Lawrence, the Secretary of State for India made the following statement in the House of Lords on 19th February 1946: “…The British Government have decided with the approval of His Majesty the King to send out to India a special mission of Cabinet Ministers consisting of Lord Pethic Lawrence, Sir Stafford Cripps and Mr. A.V.Alexander.” The Cabinet Mission arrived in Delhi on 24th March 1946. During its stay in India, the Cabinet Mission held 182 sittings in which they interviewed 472 Indian leaders from various shades. In all the interviews the discussion revolved round, “United India vs Pakistan.” The Congress case was presented by Azad on 3rd April. He said that the future constitution would be determined by the constitution-making body and in the intervening period, there should be an interim Government at the Centre…On the completion of the work of constitution-making, a province should have three options. 1. To stand out of the constitution 2. To government, he would tell him that the government would be compelled to go ahead without the

316

enter the constitution by federating for the compulsory subjects only and 3. To federate for the compulsory as well as for the optional subjects. Arguing against the demand of the Muslim, Azad said: “The Congress could never agree to the partition of India.” Gandhi, in his interview told the Cabinet Mission: “He had never been able to appreciate the Pakistan which Mr. Jinnha says he means… His Pakistan was a sin which he (Gandhi) would not commit. put into shape, should serve as Rajaji formula, if the basis for

negotiations; and unless he himself were to be reasoned into it, he could not go further, beyond that Pakistan was an untruth.” Gandhi further said: “In his view the twonation theory was most dangerous. The Muslim population, but for a microscopic minority was a population of converts. They were all descendents of India-born people. He was opposed to the two-nation theory or to two constitution-making bodies.” Gandhi suggested that Jinnah should be asked to form the first Government with personnel chosen from the elected members of the Legislature. The Viceroy would appoint them formally, but in fact, Jinnah would choose them. If Jinnah refused, then the offer to form a Government should be made to the Congress. To this, Jinnah’s reply was: “The Congress offer to serve under his leadership is a complete humbug.” “The Congress,” he said, “had always insisted that such a Government should be responsible to a legislature, which meant that it would be quickly withdrawn. It would not work at all. We should be fighting like Kilkenny Cats all the times.”
(The Origin of Partition of India: Anita Inder Singh, pg 155)

317

Jinnah was invited to justify his demand for a separate Pakistan. He told the Cabinet Mission: “Through out the history, from the days of Chandragupta, there had never been any Government of India in the sense of single Government. After the British had come, they had gradually established their rule in a large part of India, but even then the country had only then partly united. The Indian States had been separate and sovereign. It was said that India was one, but this was not so. India was really many and was held by the British as one… The Muslims had the different conception of the life from the Hindus. They admired different qualities in their heroes; they had a different culture based on Arabic and Persian instead of Sanskrit origins. The social customs were entirely different. Hindu society and their philosophy were the most exclusive in the world. Muslims and Hindus had been living side by side in India for a thousand years, but if one went into any Indian city, one would see separate Hindu and Muslim quarters. It was not possible to make a nation unless there were essential uniting factors. He had therefore come to the conclusion, after fifty years of experience, that there was no other solution but the division of India. There were in India two totally different and deeply rooted civilizations side by side, and the only solution was to have two steel frames, one in Hindustan and the other one in Pakistan. At this time, Nehru was in Malaya delivering speeches on Asiatic unity. A British official reported to India Office. “He (Nehru) was a little scornful of Jinnah and doubted very much whether he had either the intention or the power to start a revolt in India if he did not secure Pakistan.” Jinnah,” said Nehru: “rather

318

reminds me of the man who was charged with the murder of his mother and father and begged the clemency of the Court on the ground that he was an orphan.”
(Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert, pg 258)

Jinnah called a convention of over 400 members of the various legislatures elected on the Muslim tickets on 10th April at Delhi. A resolution was passed at this convention, which demanded sovereign and independent State of Pakistan, comprising the six provinces of Bengal, Assam in the north-east and the Punjab, the NWFP, Sind and Baluchistan in the north-west of India; the setting up of two separate constitution-making bodies by the people of Pakistan and Hindustan for the purpose of framing their respective constitutions, and the provision of safeguards for the minorities. The acceptance of the Muslim League demand for Pakistan, and its implementation without delay, were declared to be Sine qua non for Muslim League cooperation and participation in the formation of an Interim Government at the Centre. Any attempt to impose a constitution or to force on them an interim Gvernment contrary to their demand would leave the Muslims no alternative but to resist such imposition by all the means possible for their survival and national existence.
(The Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pg 287-288)

Azad issued the following statement regarding demands of Muslims and other minorities: “I have considered from every possible point of view the scheme of Pakistan as formulated by the Muslim League. As an Indian I have examined its implications for

319

the future of India as a whole. As a Muslim I have examined its likely effects upon the fortunes of Muslims of India. “Considering the scheme in all its aspects I have come to the conclusion that it is harmful not only for India as a whole, but for Muslims in particular. And in fact it creates more problems than it solves. “I must confess that the very term Pakistan goes against my grain. It suggests that some portions of the world are pure while others are impure. Such a division of territories into pure and impure is un-Islamic and is more in keeping with orthodox Brahmanism which divides men and countries into holy and unholy-division which is a repudiation of the very spirit of Islam. Islam recognizes no such division and the prophet says, ‘God has made the whole world a mosque for me’. “Further, it seems that the scheme of Pakistan is a symbol of defeatism and has been built up on the analogy of the Jewish demand for a national home. It is a confession that Indian Muslims cannot hold their own in India as a whole and would be content to withdraw to a corner specially reserved for them. “One can sympathise with the aspiration of the Jews for such a national home, as they are scattered all over the world and cannot in any region have any effective voice in the administration. The conditions of Indian Muslims is quite otherwise. Over 90 million in number, they are in quantity and quality a sufficiently important element in Indian life to influence decisively all questions of administration and policy. Nature has further helped them by concentrating them in certain areas.

320

“In such a context, the demand for Pakistan looses all force. As a Muslim, I for one am not prepared for a moment to give up my right to treat the whole of India as my domain and to share in the shaping of its political and economic life. To me it seems a sure sign of cowardice to give up what is my patrimony and content myself with mere fragment of it. “As is well known, Mr. Jinnah’s Pakistan scheme is based on his two-nation theory. His thesis is that India contains many nationalities based on religious differences. Of them the two major nations, the Hindus and Muslims, must as separate nations have separate states. When Dr. Edward Thompson once pointed out to Mr. Jinnah that Hindus and Muslims live side by side in thousands of Indian towns, villages and hamlets, Mr. Jinnah replied that this in no way affected their separate nationality. Two nations according to Mr. Jinnah confront one another in every hamlet, village and town, and he, therefore, desires that they should be separate into two states. “I am prepared to overlook all other aspects of the problem and judge it from the point of view of Muslim interests alone. I shall go still further and say that if it can be shown that the scheme of Pakistan can in any way benefit Muslims I would be prepared to accept it myself and also to work for its acceptance by others. But the truth is that even if I examine the scheme from the point of view of the communal interests of the Muslims themselves, I am forced to the conclusion that it can in no way benefit them or allay their legitimate fears. “Let us consider dispassionately the consequences which will follow if we give effect to the Pakistan scheme.

321

India will be divided into two states, one with a majority of Muslims and the other of Hindus. In the Hindustan State there will remain three and half crores of Muslims scattered in small minorities all over the land. With 17% in U.P. 12% in Bihar and 9% in Madras, they will be weaker than they are today in the Hindu majority regions for almost a thousand years and built up well known centers of Muslim culture and civilization there “They will awaken overnight and discover that they have become alien and foreigners. Backward industrially, educationally and economically, they will be left to the mercies to what would become an unadulterated Hindu Raj. “On the other hand, their position within the Pakistan State will be vulnerable and weak. Nowhere, in Pakistan will their majority be comparable to the Hindu majority in the Hindustan States. “In fact, their majority will be so slight that it will be upset by the economical, educational and political lead enjoyed by non-Muslims in these areas. Even if this were not so and Pakistan were overwhelmingly Muslim in population, it still could hardly solve the problem of Muslims in Hindustan. “Two States confronting one another, offer no solution of the problem of one another’s minorities, but only lead to redistribution and reprisals by introducing a system of mutual hostages. The scheme of Pakistan therefore solves no problem for the Muslims. It cannot safeguard their rights where they are in a minority nor as citizens of Pakistan secure them for a position in India or world affairs, which they would enjoy as citizens of a major State like the Indian Union.

322

“The formula which I have succeeded in making the Congress accept secures whatever merit the Pakistan scheme contains while all its defects and drawbacks are avoided… The Congress scheme ensures that the Muslim majority provinces are internally free to develop as they will, but can at the same time influence the Centre on all issues which affect India as a whole.”
(India Wins Freedom by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, pg 150152)

The Cabinet Mission interviewed both Jinnah and Azad again with a view to exploring the possibilities of a compromise. Jinnah was interviewed on 16th April and Azad on the following day. Jinnah said that no amount of equality provided on paper would work. Equality could not exist between the majority and the He minority did within think the that same the government systems. not

domination of the Muslims by the Hindus could be prevented in any scheme in which they were kept together. It was only when the Muslims were the majority in Pakistan and the Hindus in Hindustan that their could be sufficient united force running through the state from the top to the bottom to provide a steel frame which could hold it together. Jinnah further said that once the principle of Pakistan was conceded, the question of the territory of Pakistan could be discussed. He concluded that his claim for six provinces was reasonable demand, but he was willing to discuss the areas. However, he stressed that he could not in any event accept the exclusion of Calcutta. When Lord Pethic Lawrence brought to his notice that

323

the Congress would not agree to this, Jinnah declared that the unity of India was ‘myth.’ Mr. Alexander said: “I have never seen a man with such a mind twisting and turning to avoid as far as possible direct answers. I came to the conclusion that Jinnah is playing this game, which is one of life and death for millions of people, very largely from the point of view of scoring a triumph in a legal negotiations by first making large demands and secondly insisting that he should make no offer reducing that demand but should wait for the other side always to say how much they would advance towards granting that demand.”
(The Origins of Partition of India by Anita Inder Singh, pg 158)

Lord Pethic Lawrence wrote a letter to both the Congress president and the Muslim League president on 27th April in which he said: “The Cabinet Mission and His Excellency the Viceroy have come to the conclusion that they should make one further attempt to obtain agreement between the Muslim League and the Congress. They realize that it would be useless to ask the two parties to meet, unless they were able to place before them a basis for negotiation, which could lead to such an agreement “I am, therefore, asked to invite the Muslim League to send four negotiators to meet the Cabinet Mission and the Viceroy, together with a similar number from the Congress Working Committee, agreement upon a scheme based upon the following fundamental principles. “The future constitutional structure of the British India to be as follows; A Union Government dealing with Foreign Affairs, Defence and Communications. There will

324

be two groups of provinces, the one of the predominantly Hindu provinces and the other of the predominantly Muslim provinces, dealing with all other subjects, which the provinces in the respective groups desire to be dealt with in common. The provincial Governments will deal with all other subjects and they will have all the residuary sovereign rights. “It is contemplated that the Indian States will take their appropriate place in this structure on terms to be negotiated with them.” In reply, Azad wrote on 28th April: “As you are aware, we have envisaged a Federal Union of the autonomous units. Such a Federal Union must of necessity deal with certain essential subjects of which the defence and its allied subjects are the most important. It must be organic and must have both an executive and legislative machinery, as well as the finance relating to those subjects, and the power to raise revenues of these purposes in its own right. Without these functions and powers, it would be weak and disjointed, and defence and progress in general would suffer. Thus, among the common subjects, in addition to the Foreign Affairs and Defence and Communications, there should be the Currency, Customs, Traffic and such other subjects, as may be found on close scrutiny to be intimately allied to them. “…We consider it wrong to form groups of provinces under the Federal Union and on religious or communal basis. …It would be wholly wrong to compel a province to function against its own wish. …It would be open to any province to exercise its option to have more common subjects with the Federal Union. Any sub-

325

federation within the Federal Union would weaken the Federal Centre, and would be otherwise wrong. We do not, therefore, favour any such development. “We consider it essential that the states should be part of the Federal Union in regard to the common subjects. The manner of their coming into the Union can be considered fully at a later stage. “You have referred to certain fundamental principles, but there is no mention of the basic issue before us, that is, the Indian Independence and the consequent withdrawal of the British army from India. It is only on the basis of that we can discuss the future of India, or any interim arrangement. “While we are ready to carry on negotiations with any party, as to the future of India, we must state our conviction India.” The Muslim League agreed to participate in the Conference without commitment or prejudice to its position as set forth in its Lahore Resolution of 1940 on Pakistan. The Cabinet Mission explained that the proposed conference would not imply preliminary acceptance or approval of the terms suggested. The Congress President, thereupon accepted the invitation to attend the conference. The four Congress representatives were, Azad, Nehru, Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan, and Sardar Patel (Mahatma by D.G. Tendulkar, pg 106-107) The Cabinet Mission desired Gandhi’s presence at Simla so as to be available for consultation and advice during the conference. Gandhi agreed but made it clear that reality will be absent from any negotiations whilst an outside ruling power still exist in

326

that he could give advice only as a friend and well-wisher of the British people and the Cabinet Mission. The Congress view point could be represented only by the Maulana Saheb, its President, or Pandit Nehru. If his advice run contrary to that of Pandit Nehru, for instance, Gandhi told them, they should follow Pandit Nehru’s advice rather than his.
(Mahatma Gandhi- the Last Phase, part II by Pyarelal, pg 204)

2nd Simla Conference: The Simla Conference began on 5, May 1946. The Congress and the League each sent four representatives: Mulana Azad, Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Patel and Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan from the Congress and Jinnah, Liaquat Ali Khan, Abdul Rab Nashtar and Nawab Ismail Khan from the Legue. After two days of discussions the gulf between the Congress and the Muslims League was still as wide as ever. On 6th May, Azad sent a letter to Lord Pethic Lawrence in which he said: “There can be no independence so long there is a sovereign army on Indian soil. We stand for the independence of the whole of India now and not in the distant or near future. Other matters are subsidiary to this and can be fitly discussed and decided by the Constituent Assembly. “The Constituent Assembly would represent the will of the free Indian nation and give effect to it. For that it would have to be preceded by a provisional Government, which must function, as far as possible, as a Government of free India, and which should undertake, to make all arrangements for the transitional period.

327

“We are emphatically of the opinion that it is not open to the conference to entertain any suggestion for a division of India. If this is to come, it should come through the Constituent Assembly, free from any influence of the present governing power. “…We do not accept the proposal of parity as between groups in regard to the Executive or the Legislature. We realize that every thing possible should be done to remove fears and suspicion from the mind of every group and community. But the way to do this is not by unreal methods which go against the basic principles of democracy on which we hope to build our constitutions.” On 8th May, Lord Pethic Lawrence suggested the following points to the President of the Congress and the Muslim Suggested League: 1.There should be an All-India Union Government and Legislature dealing with foreign affairs, defence, communications, fundamental rights and having the necessary powers to obtain for itself the finances it requires for these subjects. 2. All the remaining powers shall vest in the provinces. 3. Groups of provinces may be formed and such groups may determine the provincial subjects which they desire to take in common. 4. The groups may set up their own executives and legislatures. League points for for agreement agreement between between the the representatives of the Congress and the Muslim League. representatives of the Congress and the Muslim

328

5. The Legislature of the Union shall be composed of equal proportions from the Muslim majority provinces and from the Hindu-majority provinces whether or not these or any of them have formed themselves into groups, together with representatives of the States. 6. The Government of the Union shall be constituted in the same proportion as the legislature. 7. The constitutions of the Union and the groups (If any) shall contain in a provision whereby any province can by a majority of vote of its Legislative Assembly call for a reconsideration of the terms of the constitution after an initial period of ten years and at ten yearly intervals thereafter. For the purpose of such reconsideration, a body shall be constituted on the same basis as the original Constituent Assembly and shall have power to amend the constitution in any way decided upon. 8. The constitution-making machinery to arrive at a constitution on the above shall be as follows: (a) Representatives shall be elected from each provincial Assembly in proportion to the strengths of the various parties in that Assembly on the basis of 1/10 of their numbers. (b) Representatives shall be invited from the States on the basis of their population in proportion to the representation from British India. (c) The Constituent Assembly so formed shall meet at the earliest date possible in New Delhi. (d) After its preliminary meeting at which the general order of business will be settled, it will divide into three sections, one section representing the Hindu-

329

majority provinces, one section representing the Muslim majority provinces and one representing the States. (e) The first two sections will then meet separately to decide the provincial constitutions for their groups. And if they wish, a group constitution. (f) When these have been settled, it will be open to any province to opt out its original group or to the other group or to remain outside any group. (g) Thereafter, the three bodies will meet together to settle the constitution for the Union on the lines agreed in paragraph 1-7 above. (h) No major point in the Union constitution, which affects the communal issue shall be deemed to be passed by the Assembly unless a majority of both the two major communities vote in its favour. (I) The Viceroy shall forthwith call together the above constitution-making machinery which shall be governed by the provisions stated in paragraph 8 above.
(Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pg 299-300)

Jinnah protested in a letter to Pethic Lawrence that the points were a fundamental departure from the original formula proposed by the Secretary of State for India; that there were many objectionable features in the new suggestions, and that no useful purpose will be served by a discussion of them. Azad also wrote to Pethic Lawrence pointing out that some of the suggestions were entirely opposed to the views of the Congress. Nevertheless, the suggested points for agreement were taken up for discussion when the conference met on 9th May. Nehru suggested that an umpire may be appointed to settle the points of disputes. Jinnah agreed

330

to this. But when conference met on 11th May, he refused to accept the decision of the umpire. There upon each of the parties was asked to furnish a statement setting out its attitude on the points that were still outstanding. The Muslim League submitted a memorandum setting out its minimum demands, by way of an offer in the following terms: “Six Muslim provinces (the Punjab, North-WestFrontier Province, Baluchistan, Sind, Bengal and Assam) shall be grouped together as one group and will deal with all other subjects and matters except foreign affairs, defence and communications necessary for defence, which may be dealt with by the constitution-making bodies of the two groups of provinces-Muslim provinces, herein after named Pakistan group and Hindu provinces sitting together. “There shall be a separate constitution-making body for the six Muslim provinces named above, which will frame constitutions for the group and provinces in the group, and will determine the list of subjects that shall be provincial and central (of the Pakistan Federation) with residuary sovereign powers vesting in the provinces. “The method of the elections of the representatives to the constitution-making body will be such as would secure proper representation to the various communities in proportion to their population in each province of the Pakistan Group. “After the constitution of the Pakistan Federal Government and provinces are finally framed by the constitution-making body, it will be open to any province of the group to decide to opt out of its group, provided the

331

wishes of the people of that province are ascertained by a referendum to opt out or not. “It must be open to discussion in the joint constitution-making body as to whether the Union will have a legislature or not. The method of providing the Union with finance should also be left for decision of the joint meeting of the two constitution-making bodies, but in no event shall it be by means of taxation. “There should be parity of representation between the two groups of provinces in the Union Executive and the legislature, if any. “No major point in the Union Constitution which affects the communal issue shall be deemed to be passed in the joint constitution-making body, unless the majority of the members of the constitution-making body of the Hindu provinces and the majority of the members of the constitution-making body of the Pakistan group, present and voting, are separately in its favour. “No decision, legislative, executive or administrative shall be taken by the Union in regard to any matter of controversial nature, except by a majority of three-fourths. “In culture and groups other and matters provincial affecting constitutions, the different fundamental rights and safeguards concerning religion, communities will be provided for. “The constitution of Union shall contain a provision whereby any province can, by a majority vote of its Legislative Assembly, call for the reconsideration of the terms of the constitution, and will have the liberty to secede from the Union at any time after an initial period of ten years.”

332

The following were the points suggested on behalf of the Congress as a basis for agreement: The Constituent Assembly to be formed as follows: “Representatives will be elected by each Provincial Assembly by proportional representation (single transferable vote). The number so elected should be onefifth of the number of members of the Assembly and they may be members of the Assembly or others; “Representatives of the States on the basis of their population in proportion to the representation from British India. How these representatives are to be chosen is to be considered later; “No major point in the Federal Constitution which affects the communal issue shall be deemed to be passed by the Constituent Assembly unless a majority of the members of the community or communities concerned present in the Assembly and voting are separately in its favour. Provided that in case there is no agreement on any such issue, it will be referred to arbitration. In case of doubt as to whether any point is a major communal issue, the Speaker will decide, or if so desired, it may be referred to the Federal Court.” The Congress also submitted the following note to show in what respects its own proposals differed from those embodied in the Muslim League’s memorandum: The most suitable method of election would be single transferable vote. This would give proper representation to the various communities in proportion to their present representation in the legislatures. The provision to the effect that no major communal issue in the Union constitution shall be deemed to be passed by the Constituent Assembly unless

333

a majority of the members of the community or communities concerned present and voting in the Constituent Assembly are separately in its favor, is sufficient and ample safeguard for all minorities. Once we have safeguarded major communal issues other matters, whether controversial or not, require no safeguards.
(Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pg 302-306)

The differences of views between the Congress and the Muslim League provided no hope for settlement. However, the conference met as scheduled on 12th May and came to the conclusion that no useful purpose would be served by further discussion and therefore it was announced that the conference has failed to bring the Congress and the League to agreement. The members of the Cabinet Mission returned to Delhi.

May 16th Declaration: The Cabinet Mission arrived at its own conclusion and drafted its famous plan, which came to be known as May 16, Plan as the basis for settlement. The Cabinet Mission explained how they examined the question of a separate and fully independent sovereign state of Pakistan consisting of six provinces as demanded by the League, but felt staggered at the size of the non-Muslim minority population in that proposed Pakistan. In view of this they felt that the setting up of an independent Pakistan on a religious basis would not solve the communal minority problem. ‘Nor can we see any justification for including within a sovereign Pakistan those districts of the Punjab and Bengal and Assam in

334

which the population is predominantly non-Muslim,’ they said. ‘Every argument that can be used in favour of Pakistan can equally, in our view, be used in favour of the exclusion of the non-Muslim areas from Pakistan.’ A smaller sovereign Pakistan confined to the Muslim-majority areas thus appeared to the Cabinet Mission as the only alternative for the basis of a compromise with the Congress. But that called for a radical partition of the Punjab and Bengal, which appeared dangerous. Moreover, a smaller Pakistan without Punjab, without the whole of Assam except the district of Sylhet, and without a large part of western Bengal including Calcutta appeared impracticable. ‘We have therefore been forced to the conclusion,’ said the Cabinet Mission, ‘that neither a larger nor a smaller sovereign state of Pakistan would provide an acceptable solution for the communal problem.’ They also pointed out how the two halves of the proposed Pakistan would remain geographically separated by some seven hundred miles of Indian territory. The Cabinet Mission thus upheld the unity of India and recommended that there should be a Union of India embracing both British India and the Indian States. The Union Centre should deal with Foreign Affairs, Defence, and Communications. All subjects other than the Union subjects and all residuary powers should vest in the provinces. These autonomous provinces should be formed into three groups, of which two would consist of Muslim-majority provinces and one of Hindu-majority provinces. These groups would draft their own constitutions. The constitutions of the Union and of the groups should contain a provision whereby any province

335

could, by a majority vote of its Legislative Assembly, call for a reconsideration of the terms of the constitution after an initial period of ten years and at ten-yearly intervals. The Cabinet Mission finally recommended that a constitution-making body should be brought into being forthwith to frame a new constitution, and that while this would proceed, an interim government having the support of the major political parties should be set up.
(A Centery History of Indian National Congress: B.N.Pande, pg 80-81)

Jinnah issued a statement on 22nd May, describing the Cabinet Mission Proposals as ‘cryptic with several lacunas.’ He regretted that the Mission should have negatived the Leagu’s demand for the establishment of a complete Sovereign State of Pakistan, which he said, was the only solution of the constitutional problem of India and which alone could secure stable government and lead to the happiness and welfare, not only of the two major communities, but of all the peoples in Indian subcontinent. The Congress Working Committee held its meeting on 24th May and opined that the provision for initial grouping was inconsistent with the freedom promised to the provinces in the matter of choice of the group in which it may want to join. The Council of the Muslim League met in Delhi on 6th June. It accepted the Cabinet Mission proposals in as much as the basis of the foundation of Pakistan were inherent in the said plan by virtue of the compulsory grouping of the Muslim majority provinces. It expressed its willingness to join the Constituent Assembly, keeping in view the opportunity and the right of secession of

336

provinces or groups from the Union which had been provided in the Mission’s plan by implication. It finally declared that though a separate sovereign Pakistan was still its aim, it has accepted the plan prompted by an earnest desire for a peaceful solution of the Indian Constitutional problem. The Congress Working Committee finally met on 25th June 1946 to deliberate on the Cabinet Mission Plan. Gandhi advised wholesale rejection of the Plan with its short-term and long-term parts. On the other hand, Azad, Nehru and Patel were for a compromise. Azad in his autobiography, “India Wins Freedom” says at page 150: “In our discussions in the Working committee, I pointed out that the Cabinet Mission Plan was basically the same as the scheme Congress had accepted. As such the Working Committee did not have much difficulty in accepting the main political solution contained in the Plan. In the end, the Committee only partially agreed with Gandhiji. It rejected the proposal for the formation of an Interim Government at the Centre but accepted the long-term proposal of the constitution-making with its own interpretation of disputed clauses. “How fundamentally Gandhiji and his collegues differed with each other as to the course to be followed with regard to the Cabinet Mission Plan will be apparent from the following description given by Shri Pyare Lal as to the happenings on the morning of 25th June when the Working committee met to give their final decision: “At 8 A.M. Bapu went to attend the Working Committee meeting. He asked me to read out the note, which he had written to Cripps last night. He then

337

addressed them very briefly: ‘I admit defeat. You are not bound to act upon my unsupported suspicion. You should follow my intuition if it appeals to your reason. Otherwise you should take an independent course. I shall now leave with your permission. You should follow the dictates of your reason.’ “A hush fell over the gathering. Nobody spoke for sometime. The Maulana Saheb with his unfailing alertness at once took in the situation. ‘What do you desire”? Is there any need to detain Bapu any further? He asked. Everybody was silent. Everybody understood. In that hour of decision they had no use for Bapu. They decided to drop the pilot. Bapu returned to his residence. “The Working Committee again met at noon and addressed a letter to the Cabinet Mission, rejecting the proposal for the formation of the Interim Government at the Centre and accepting the long-term plan with its own interpretation of the disputed clause. At noon, the Cabinet Mission invited the members of the Working committee to meet them. Bapu not being a member was not sent for and did not go. On their return nobody told Bapu a word about what happened at the meeting.” The Working Committee’s decision of the 25th June was communicated to the Cabinet Mission on the same day. It treated the Congress decision as an acceptance of their plan of 16th May. Immediately after the Congress decision, the Cabinet Mission saw Jinnah and informed him that the plan of 16th June had fallen through; that the Congress had, however, accepted the Statement of 16th May; and that, since both the Congress and the League had now accepted the Statement, it was proposed to set up a

338

coalition Government, including both parties, as soon as possible. Jinnah straight went to his Working Committee, which passed a resolution to join the Inrerim Government on the basis of 16th May Plan. Thus a new situation developed. Paragraph 8 of the Statement of 16th May stated that in the event of two major parties or either of them proving unwilling to join in the setting up of a coalition Government on the above lines, it is the intention of the Viceroy to proceed with the formation of an Interim Government which will be as representative as possible of those willing to accept the Statement of 16th May. Jinnah interpreted this to mean that if the Congress rejected the Interim Government proposals, but the League accepted them, the Viceroy would at once be obliged to form a Government consisting of representatives of the Muslim League and any other parties which had accepted the Statement of 16th May. In a letter to Jinnah the Viceroy repeated what the Mission and he had already told him as to the course which the Mission proposed to adopt. But Jinnah held to his own interpretation and insisted that the Mission had gone back on their word by postponing to form an Interim Government; that the long-term plan and the formation of the Interim Government formed one whole, and that it was undesirable to proceed with one part, i.e. the elections to the Constituent Assembly, and to postpone the other. The Viceroy denied that they had gone back on their word, and added that there was no intention of postponing the elections to the Constituent Assembly, arrangements for which had already been put into operation.

339

The negotiations for the formation of Interim Government failed. The existing Executive Council had lost some of his members by resignation. It became necessary to make transitional arrangement at the Centre pending further negotiations with the parties. The Viceroy decided to set up a care taker Government composed of officials, who would function until such time as his efforts with the political leaders could be renewed.
(Transfer of Power by V.P.Menon, pg 324-325)

The Cabinet Mission left India for England on 29th June 1946 with the depressing feeling that no solution was in sight since the Congress and the League were still in divergence regarding the workable aspect of the Plan. Nehru’s Damaging Role: At the session of the All India Congress Committee on 6th July 1946, Jawaharlal Nehru was installed as Congress President in place of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. Winding up the proceedings of the All India Congress Committee, Nehru said: “…It was not a question of Congress accepting any plan, long or short. It was merely a question of their agreeing to enter the Constituent Assembly and nothing more than that. They would remain in the Constituent Assembly so long as they thought that it was for India’s good and they would come out when they thought it was injuring their cause. We are not bound by a single thing except that we have decided for the moment to go to the Constituent Assembly.” Referring to the provisions laid down by the Cabinet Mission, namely proper arrangements for minorities and a treaty between India and England, Nehru said that he would have no treaty with the British

340

Government, if they sought to impose anything upon India; and we shall no doubt, succeed in solving it. We accept no outsider’s interference in it, certainly not the British Government’s interference, and therefore, these two limiting factors to the sovereignty of the Constituent Assembly are not accepted by us. With regard to the question of grouping Nehru said: “The big probability is, from any approach to the question, there will be no grouping. There is a four to one chance to the North-West Frontier province deciding against grouping. Then group B collapses. It is likely that Bengal and Assam will decide aginst grouping, although I would not like to say what the initial decision may be since it is evenly balanced. But I can say with every assurance and conviction that there is going to be finally no grouping there, because Assam will not tolerate it under any circumstances whatever. Thus you see this grouping business, approached from any point of view, does not get us on at all.” Dealing with the powers of the proposed Union Centre, Nehru said that defence and communications would embrace a large number of industries necessary for their support. Foreign affairs must inevitably include foreign trade policy. It was equally inevitable that the union must raise its finances by taxation, rather than by any system of contribution or doles from the provinces. Further, the centre must obviously control currency and credit; and there must be an overall authority to settle inter-provincial disputes and to deal with administrative or economic breakdowns.
(Transfer of Power in India; V.P.Menon pg 327-328)

341

Nehru’s statement on the Cabinet Mission Plan was at once taken up by Jinnah. He characterized it as a complete repudiation of the basic form on which the longterm plan rests and all its fundamentals and terms and obligations and rights of parties accepting the plan. Jinnah suggested that His Majesty’s Government should make it clear beyond doubt and remove the impression that the Congress has accepted the long-term plan. In an editorial, DAWN-the League’s official Daily, posed a question whether the British Government was going to delude itself and mislead the world with the illusion that the Congress had accepted the long-term plan, or whether it was going to make it clear that should any party proceed inside the Constituent Assembly on any other basis, than that prescribed in the Statement of May 16, the plan would be deemed to have failed and the Constituent Assembly would be dissolved.
(Transfer of Power in India V.P. Menon, pg 328)

The DAWN threatened that the moment a Hindu Government is set up without the consent and the collaboration of Muslims, the first shot of aggression will have been fired against them and that will be signal for Muslims to do or die.
(The Origins of Partition of India by Anita Inder Singh, pg 181)

Jinnah wrote a strictly private, personal and confidential letter on 6th July 1946 to Lord Attlee in which he said; “…The British Government would still avoid compelling the Muslims to shed their blood, for, your surrender to the Congress as the sacrifice of the Muslims can only result in that direction. If politics is going to be the deciding factor in total disregard of fair play and justice, we shall have no other course open to

342

us except to forge our sanction to meet the situation, which in that case, is bound to arise. Its consequences, I need not say, will be most disastrous and a possible settlement will then become impossible.”
(Partition of India Legend & Reality by H.M. Seervai, pg 55)

On 10th July 1946, Nehru held a press conference in Bombay in which he made an astonishing statement. Some press representatives asked him whether with the passing of the resolution by the AICC, the Congress now accepted the plan in toto including the composition of the interim Government. Nehru in reply stated that the Congress would enter the Constituent Assembly completely unfettered by the agreements and free to meet all situations as they arise. Press representatives further asked him, if this meant that the Cabinet Mission Plan could be modified. Nehru replied emphatically that the Congress had agreed only to participate in the Constituent Assembly and regarded itself free to change or modify the Cabinet Mission Plan as it thought best.
(India Wins Freedom by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad pg 164)

The belief that Nehru expressed these views because he was carried away by his feelings is not correct. Nehru’s statements at the press conference represented a view, which he firmly held. He had expressed similar views in his interviews with the Cabinet Mission and the Viceroy on 10th June 1946, in which he had said: “…The Congress was going to work for a strong center and to break the group system and they would succeed. They did not think that Mr. Jinnah had any real place in the country. The Muslim League and the

343

Congress each represented entirely different outlooks on the work of the constitution- making body and they were bound to have strong differences in the Interim Government.
(Partition of India Legend and reality by H.M.Seervai pg 64 & 74)

The Working Committee of the Congress tried to undo the damage done by Nehru’s statement by passing a resolution, which reaffirmed the acceptance of the Cabinet Mission Plan by the Congress. But the damage could not be undone. In the words of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad: “Mr. Jinnah, did not however, accept the position and held that Jawaharlal’s statement represented the real mind of the Congress. He argued that if the Congress could change so many times while the British were still in the country and power had not come to its hands, what assurance would minorities have that once the British left, the Congress would not again change and go back to the position taken up in Jawaharlal’s statement”.
(Partition of India Legend & Reality by H.M. Seervai, pg 76)

Dr. K.M. Munshi wrote: “Jawaharlal Nehru as president of the Congress spoke on 10th July, what was in our hearts, but gave a handle to Jinnah.”
(Pilgrimage to Freedom by K.M. Munshi, pg 104)

The statement of Nehru was perhaps the worst of all indiscrete statements that were ever made by any politician. It was a moment in history when circumspection should have been the order of the day. There was much to be gained by silence. The fortunes of India were in balance, and one false move could upset them. Nehru chose the moment to launch into what his

344

biographer, Mchael Brecher, has described as, “one of the most fiery and provocative statements in his forty years of public… Did Nehru realize what he was saying? He was telling the world that once in power, Congress would use its strength at the centre to alter the Cabinet Mission Plan as it thought fit.”
(Jinnah and Gandhi: S.K. Mujumdar, pg 228) (Mosley: The Last days of British Raj; pg 28)

Following

Nehru’s

statement,

Jinnah

held

a
th

meeting of the Council of the Muslims League on 27

July 1946 in Bombay to review the whole issue in the light of Nehru’s declaration. At the concluding session of the Council on 29th July, Jinnah announced: “The League, throughout the negotiations, was moved by a sense of fair play and sacrificed the full sovereign state of Pakistan at the alter of the Congress for securing the independence of the whole of India. They voluntarily delegated three subjects to the Union, and by doing so did not commit a mistake. It was the highest order of statesmanship that the League displayed by making this concession. But this has been treated with defiance and contempt. Then, are we alone to be guided by reason, justice, honesty and fairplay, when on the other hand there are perfidious dealings by the Congress.
(A Centenary History of Indian National Congress: B.N.Pande, pg 83)

Jinnah concluded by saying that in view of the true intentions of the Congress as expressed in Nehru’s speech, it was no longer possible to work in cooperation with the Congress, and therefore, the League had no alternative but to adhere once more to the national goal of Pakistan. In a passionate voice he gave a marching

345

call, “We have learnt a bitter lesson, the bitterest, I think, so far. Now there is no room left for compromise. Let us march on to our cherished goal of Sovereign Pakistan.”
(Jinnah: Hector Bolitho, pg 165)

The Working Committee of Muslims League then passed two resolutions. The first resolution was to the effect that in the events that had happened, the Muslim League Council had felt that their interests would not be safe in the Constituent Assembly and decided that the acceptance of the Plan contained in the Cabinet Missions Statement of May 16, should be revoked. The second resolution called upon the Working Committee to draw up a plan for direct action and called upon all the members of the League to renounce titles conferred by the Government. After the resolution had been passed Jinnah declared: “What we have done today is the most historic act in our history. Never have we in the whole history of the League done anything except constitutional methods and constitutionalism. But now we are obliged and forced into this position. This day we bid goodbye to the constitutional methods. He recalled that through out the fateful negotiations with the Cabinet Mission the other two parties, the British and the Congress, each held a pistol in their hands, the one of authority and arms and the other of mass struggle and non-cooperation. Today, we have also forged a pistol and we are in a position to use it.”
(Transfer of Power in India: V.P. Menon, pg 331)

The Working Committee of the League followed up the Council’s resolution by calling upon the Muslims

346

through out India to observe 16 th August as ‘Direct Action Day.’ The effect of Nehru’s answers in the words of Azad: “Jawaharlal’s mistake in 1937 had been bad enough. His mistake in 1946 proved even more costly. One may perhaps say in Jawaharlal’s defence, that he never expected the Muslim League to resort to direct action. Mr. Jinnah had never been a believer in mass movement.” Nehru had earlier written a letter to Cripps on 27th January 1946 in which he had said: “The Muslim League leadership is far too reactionary (they are mostly land lords) and opposed to social change to dare to indulge in any form of direct action. They are incapable of it, having spent their lives in soft jobs. If it is made once clear that violence on their part will not help them at all, they will subside.”
(Partition of India –Legend and Reality by H.M. Seervai, pg 77)

at his press

conference and their grave aftermath is best summed up

While the elections were in progress, the Viceroy had been in correspondence with the Secretary of State on the subject of formation of an Interim Government to replace the care taker Government at the centre. As agreed the Viceroy wrote to the presidents of the Congress and the Muslim League on 22nd July as follows: “I propose the following for your consideration: 1. The Interim Government will consist of 14 members 2. Six members, including will be Scheduled Caste by the representative nominated

Congress. The five members will be nominated

347

by the Muslim League. Three representatives of minorities will be nominated by the Viceroy. One of these places will be kept for a Sikh. It will not be open either to the Congress or the League to object to the names submitted by othe party, provided they are accepted by the Viceroy. Distribution of portfolios will be decided after the parties have agreed to enter the Government and submitted their names. The Congress and the Muslim League will each have an important portfolios. equitable share of the most

3. The assurances that the status of the Interim
Government which I gave in my letter dated 30th May to Maulana Azad will stand. Concluding his letter, the Viceroy said: “We should not spend further time in negotiations; but should try out a Government at once on the basis as proposed above. If it does not work, and if you find the conditions uneasy, it will be open to you to withdraw, but I am confident that you will not.” Nehru sent his reply on 23rd July in which he said: “The assurances which the Viceroy had given to Azad in his letter of 30th May with regard to the status of the Interim Government were very far from satisfying the Congress, which had all along attached the greatest importance, to what it called the ‘independence of action’ of the Interim Government. should This meant only that as the a Government should have perfect freedom and that the Governor-General function constitutional head. Nor would it be proper for the

348

Governor-General minorities.”

to

select

representatives

of

the

Nehru concluded that in view of what he had stated above, he was wholly unable to cooperate in the formation of a Government on the lines suggested by the Viceroy. So far as he knew the mind of the Congress, it would want the political independence issue settled before it could enter any government.
(Transfer of power in India by V.P. Menon, pg 335)

Meanwhile there came the resolution of the Council of the All India Muslim League rejecting the Cabine Mission plan. At his meeting with Nehru, the Viceroy suggested that this resolution was partly a reaction to the language used by him (Nehru) and other Congress leaders since the meeting of the All India Congress Committee in Bombay. It would be most unfortunate, said the Viceroy, if the League did not join the Constituent Assembly. Here was a chance to the Congress to show real statesmanship by giving the Muslim League assurances, which would bring its representatives into the Constituent Assembly. Nehru said he did not see what assurances could be given. The Viceroy said that he was anxious to form an Interim Government as soon as possible, but that it was impossible to go beyond the assurances given in his letter to Azad regarding the status and the powers of the Interim Government. He expressed a desire to see Nehru as soon as possible after the meeting of the Congress Working Committee which was to take place in Wardha on 8th August. On 31st July, Jinnah sent his reply to the Viceroy’s letter of 22nd July with regard to the Interim

349

Government. He said that the Viceroy’s basis for the formation of an Interim Government gave go-by to all the important terms that were favourable to the Muslim League. It straightway broke the principle of parity. The Scheduled Castes had been let down, in as much as one of them was proposed to be nominated by the Congress and not by their own spokesman. It would be next open to the Congress to nominate a ‘Quisling Muslim.’ Moreover, the distribution of portfolios would be equitable and not equal as had been originally proposed. As to the assurance about the safeguards, he said that the Viceroy did not seem to attach much importance to it. This was a very clear and substantial departure that was most detrimental to the Muslim League and was obviously intended to appease the Congress. Jinnah concluded that in his opinion there was no chance of his Working Committee accepting Viceroy’s proposal. Interim Government: On 6th August 1946, the Vicoroy acting under the instructions of His Majesty’s Government invited Nehru as Congress President to submit proposals for the formation of an Interim Government on the basis of the assurance contained in his letter of 30th May to Azad. The Viceroy further wrote: “It would be for Nehru to consider whether he should first discuss the proposals with Jinnah. If he could reach an agreement with Jinnah, he would naturally be delighted.”
by V.P.Menon, pg 339) (Transfer of Power in India

The Congress Working Committee met on 8th August at Wardha and decided to accept the invitation extended to Nehru to form an Interim Government and authorized him to negotiate with the Viceroy. In another

350

resolution, the Congress Working Committee expressed its genuine regret that the League had decided not to participate in the Constituent Assembly. The resolution pointed out that neither the Working Committee nor the AICC ever objected to the principle of grouping, their objection being confined to short point whether a province can be forced to a particular group against its will? The Congress Working Committee hoped that the Muslim League and all other concerned in the wider interest of the nation, as well as for their own, will join in this great task. The resolution, however, did not satisfy Jinnah. In a statement issued soon after, he said that but for its phraseology, the resolution was only a repeatation of what had been the Congress stand from the beginning. He stuck to his view that Nehru’s statement represented the concealed intention of the Congress. He said, he could not trust the Congress and he believed that the moment the British left the country, the Hindudominated Constituent Assembly would do away with the half-way house to Pakistan built by the Cabinet Mission by means of grouping of the provinces. Jinnah concluded that the situation remains as it was and we are where we were.
(Jinnah and Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 229)

After

the

meeting

of

the

Congress

Working

Committee, Nehru wrote to the Viceroy: “In view of the resolution adopted by the Muslim League and the statements made on behalf of it, the best course would be to make a public announcement to the effect that he had invited the president of the Congress to form the provisional Interim Government and the latter has

351

accepted his invitation. It will then be possible for us to approach the Muslim League and invite its cooperation.” The Viceroy accepted Nehru’s suggestion and made the necessary announcement on 12th August and accordingly issued a communiqué. On 13th August, Nehru wrote to Jinnah about Viceroy’s invitation to him and his acceptance of it. On 15th August, Jinnah replied to Nehru stating that he knew nothing of what transpired between the Viceroy and him, nor had he any idea of what agreement had been reached between them. If the Viceroy had commissioned Nehru to form an Executive Council and accept and act upon his advice, it was not possible for him (Jinnah) to accept such a position. However, if Nehru cared to meet him on behalf of the Congress to settle the Hindu-Muslim question and resolve the serious deadlock, he would be glad to see him. In his reply to Jinnah, Nehru made it clear that there was no arrangement between the Viceroy and himself, except that was contained in the Viceroy’s brief offer and the Congress acceptance. He regretted Jinnah’s decision, but suggested that perhaps on fuller consideration he might be agreeable to reconsider it. The latter finally agreed to meet Nehru. They had a long discussion, which did not, however, lead to any result. On 17th August, Nehru requested the Viceroy to raise the number of members in the Interim Government from 14 to 15 for the efficient discharge of their functions as also to enable a representative of the Anglo-Indian community. But the Viceroy objected on the ground that it would make the League’s joining the Government more difficult. He said: “The matter of paramount importance

352

is to leave no stone unturned to get the Muslim League join the Interim Government. On 19th August, Nehru wrote to the Viceroy that he had consulted his collegues, whose reaction was identical with him. He contended that he had accepted the Viceroy’s invitation to make proposals for the formation of an Interim Government on the understanding that the rsponsiblity would be his and that of the Congress. On the same day, Jinnah issued a statement to the press, the tone and temper of which convinced the Viceroy that it would be useless to make any approach to Jinnah. On 22nd August, Nehru wrote a letter to the Viceroy stating that the Congress had been anxious to form a coalition Interim Government with the Muslim League and that they would continue to work to that end; but he wanted to make it clear that the Congress idea of a coalition did not mean a submission to the demand or the peculiar ways which the League adopted. A coalition could come into existence on the clear understanding that the League nominates its five representatives, including the nationalist Muslim. Nehru submitted a list of 12 members for the Interim Government. Two names were left to be filled by the League, if and when they joined the Government. On 24th August, a press communiqué was issued stating that the King had accepted the resignations of the existing members of the Governor-General’s Executive Council and that His Majesty’s Government had been pleased to appoint in their places the following:

353

Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Mr. Asaf Ali, Dr. C Rajagopalachariar, Sarat Chandra Bose, John

Mathai, Sardar Baldev Singh, Sir Shafaat Ahmed Khan, Jagjivanram, Syd Ali Zaheer and C.H.Bhaba. Two more Muslim members would be appointed later. The Interim Government would take office on 2nd September. On the same day, the Viceroy in his broadcast said that he would fully implement His Majesty’s Government policy of giving the new Government maximum freedom, in the day to day administration of the country. As a sop to the provinces ruled by the Mulsim League ministries, the Viceroy declared that the new Government had neither power nor any desire to trespass on the field of provincial administration. But this assurance failed to convince Jinnah. He said that the Viceroy had struck a severe blow to the Muslim League and Muslim India. He reiterated his demand for the vivisection of India, and said if Viceroy’s appeal is really sincere and if he is in earnest, he should translate it into concrete proposals by his deeds and actions.
(Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pg 350)

The Interim Government was sworn in on 2nd September. Sir Shafaat Ahmed Khan, a scholarly and patriotic Muslim, who had agreed to join the Interim Government was the victim of a murderous assault on the eve of his accepting the office. On 7th September, Nehru broadcast from the All India Radio in which he said that the Interim Government was a part of a larger scheme, which included the Constituent Assembly. The Constituent Assembly would soon be meeting to give shape to the

354

constitution of a free and independent India. There had been much heated argument about sections and groupings in the Constituent Assembly, but the Congress was perfectly prepared to accept, indeed had accepted, the position of setting in sections which would consider the question of the formation of groups. On behalf of his colleagues and himself, he wished to make it clear that they did not take upon the Constituent Assembly as an arena of conflict, or for the forcible imposition of one point of view over another. That would not be the way to build a contended and united India. Jinnah gave an interview to the representative of ‘London Daily Mail’ on 8th September in which he said: “Nehru has made no definite proposals to me; I have been stabbed and kind words will not stop the bleeding.”
(Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pg 356-357)

The Viceroy saw Jinnah on 25th September. Jinnah pressed for acceptance of a convention that major communal issues in the Interim Government be decided by a vote of both communities. Nehru did not desire the Viceroy to see Jinnah. This is evident from Pethic Lawrence’s letter of 30th September to Cripps in which he said: “…Nehru objects to Viceroy having talks with Jinnah re-entering the Interim Government. I do not see how you can possibly give him any assurance on this point……I do not feel disposed to stop Viceroy doing it and if I did, I think the Viceroy would resign…It is essential that we should stand behind the Viceroy in pressing Congress for accomodation.”
(Partition of India: Legend & Reality by H.M. Seervai, pg 83)

355

The Viceroy continued his efforts to bring about settelment with Nehru and Jinnah. He informed Jinnah on 2nd October that he had failed to secure any concession from the Congress over the nationalist Muslim issue. He emphasised at the same time that it was in the obvious interest of the Muslim League to come into the Government at once and unconditionally. Jinnah did not enter in any argument on the nationalist Muslim issue, but said that if he was to have any chance of satisfying his Working Committee, he must show them some success on other points, e.g., a safeguard on major communal issues. Finally, Jinnah agreed to summon his Working Committee as soon as possible and undertook to send the Viceroy a note setting on the points on which he required elucidation. Jinnah sought elucidation on the following nine points: 1. The total number of the members of the Executive Council to be fourteen. 2. Six nominees of the Congress will include one Scheduled Caste representative, but it must not be taken that the Muslim League has agreed to, or approves of, the selection of the Scheduled Caste representative, the ultimate responsibility on that behalf being with the Governor-General and the Viceroy. 3. The Congress should not include in the remaining five members of their quota a Muslim of their choice. 4. Safeguard: there should be a convention that on major communal issues, if the majority of the Hindu or Muslim members of he Executive

356

Council are opposed, then no decision should be taken. 5. Alternative or rotational Vice President should be appointed in fairness from both the major communities as it was adopted in the U.N.O. Conference. 6. The Muslim League was not consulted in the selection of the three minority representatives i.e. Sikh, Indian Christian and Parsi and it should not be taken that the Muslim League approved of the selection that had been made. But in future, in the event of there being a vacancy owing to death, resignation or otherwise, representatives of these minorities should be chosen in consultation with the two major parties-the Muslim League and the Congress. 7. Portfolios: The most important portfolios must be equally distributed between the two major parties-the Muslim League and the Congress. 8. The above arrangement should not be changed or modified unless both the major parties-the Muslim League and the Congress agree. 9. The question of the settlement of the long-term plan should stand over until a better and more conducive atmosphere is created and an agreement has been reached on the points stated above and after the Interim Government has been formed and finally set up. After consultation with Nehru on 4th October, the Viceroy sent pointwise reply to Jinnah as follows: 1. This is agreed.

357

2. I note what you say and accept that the responsibility is mine. 3. I am unable to agree to this. Each party must be equally free to nominate its own representatives. 4. In coalition Government, it is impossible to decide major matters of policy when one of the main parties to the coalition is strongly against a course of action proposed. My present collegues and I are agreed that it would be fatal to allow major communal issues to be decided by vote in the Cabinet. The efficiency and the prestige of the Interim Government will depend on ensuring that differences are resolved in advance of Cabinet meetings by friendly discussions. A coalition Government either works by a process of mutual adjustment or does not work at all. 5. The arrangement of alternative or rotational Vice-presidentship would present practical difficulty, and I do not consider it feasible. I will, however, arrange to nominate a Muslim League member to preside over the Cabinet in the event of the Governor-General and the Vice president being absent. I will also nominate a Muslim League member as Vice Chairman of the Coordination Committee of the Cabinet, which is most important post. I am Chairman of this Committee, and in the past have presided almost invariably, but I shall probably do so only on special occasions in future.

358

6. I accept that both major parties would be consulted before filling a vacancy in any of these three seats. 7. In the present condition all the portfolios in the Cabinet are of great importance and it is a matter of opinion which are the most important. The minority representatives cannot be excluded fom the share of a major portfolio. But subject to this, there can be equal distribution of the most important portfolios between the Congress and the Muslim League. Details would be matter of negotiations. 8. I agree. 9. Since the basis of participation in the Cabinet is, of course, acceptance of the Statement of May 16, I assume that the League Council would meet at a very early date to reconsider its Bombay resolution. (Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pp 263-65) Nehru refused to accept the League’s claim that it must be consulted on future appointments to the Interim Government of representatives of minorities. The Congress, he said, could not allow its position vis-à-vis Scheduled Castes or other minorities to be challenged by the League. Nor could the Congress agree to the demand that the office of the Vice president should be held in turn by members of both parties. Instead an offer was made that the Vice Chairmanship of the Cabinet Coordination Committee would be given to a member of the Muslim League; or, in the alternative, a League member of the Cabinet would be the leader of the House of the Central Assembly. With regard to the procedure for

359

settling such differences of opinion as might arise over a major communal issue, the Congress view was that matters coming before the Cabinet should not be referred to a court; that agreement should always be reached, and that if this were not possible the matter should be referred to arbitration. The net result of the discussions was to accentuate the bitterness between the two parties and to cause further confusion in the public mind. When the Viceroy saw Jinnah, the latter sprang a surprise by asking, since the Congress had the right to nominate a Muslim in its quota, he could nominate a representative of Scheduled Castes or other minority in its quota. The Viceroy admitted that he could do so, but pointed out that such a nomination would not help towards a harmonious working of the Cabinet. He confirmed this in writing on 12th October On 13th October Jinnah wrote to the Viceroy as follows: “…My Committee, for various reasons, have come to the conclusion that in the interest of Musalmans and other Communities it would be fatal to leave the entire field of administration of the Central Government in the hands of the Congress. Besides, you may be forced to have in your Interim Government Muslims who do not command respect and confidence of Muslim India, which would lead to various serious consequences, and lastly, for other very weighty grounds and reasons which are obvious and need not be mentioned, we have decided to noninate five members on behlf of the Muslim League in terms of your broadcast of 24th August 1946 and your two letters to me dated 4th October 1946, and 12th

360

October 1946, respectively, embodying clarifications and assurances.” Now that the League decided to join the Cabinet, Jinnah acted in a most peculiar manner. Apart from Liaqat Ali, the most important and experienced leaders of the Muslim League were Khwaja Nazimuddin and Nawab Ismail. Khan had never taken an extreme position in the disputes between the Congress and the League. This had obviously displeased Jinnah. He thought that they would not be yes men and he therefore decided to exclude them from the list. It would, however, have created a furor in the League Council if this fact was prematurely known. He therefore, induced the League Council to pass a resolution delegating full authority to him. When Jinnah submitted the list to Lord Wavell on 14 October the names included were those of Liaqat Ali, I.I.Chundrigar, Abdul Rab Nishtar Ghaznafar Ali, and Jogendra Nath Mandal. Khwaja Nazimuddin and Ismail Khan were discarded in favour of Jinnah’s henchmen. On 25th October, names of the Muslim League members of the Interim Government along with allocation of their portfolios were announced. Khwaja Nazimuddin, Nawab Ismail Khan and other Muslim League leaders were waiting anxiously in the Imperial Hotel for the announcement. They were absolutely sure about their own inclusion and so were their supporters, Accordingly, a large number of Muslim League members had come with garlands and bouquets. When the names were announced and neither was included in the list, one can imagine their disappointment and anger. Mr. Jinnah had poured ice-cold water on their hopes.
th

361

An even more ridiculous thing the Muslim League did was to include Jogendra Nath Mandal in its list. Congress had nominated Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Parsi, Scheduled Castes and Christian members on the Executive Council, but when the limitations under which it worked, it could include only one representative of Scheduled Castes. The Muslim League thought that it would put the Congress to shame by nominating a second reprsentative of the Scheduled Castes and in this way prove that it was a geater friend of Scheduled Castes, than the Congress. It did not strike to Jinnah that this action was inconsistent with his earlier claim that Congress should nominate only Hindus and the Muslim League only Muslims. Besides, the choice of his nominee caused both amusement and anger. When Suhrawardy formed a Muslim League ministry in Bengal, the only non-Muslim included in his ministry was Jogendra Nath Mandal. He was then almost unknown in Bengal and had no position whatever in all India politics. Since he was nominee of the Muslim League, he was appointed Law Minister. Most of the Secretaries to the Government of India were British. Mr. Mandal had also a British Secretary, who complained almost every day that it was difficult to work with a member like Mr. Mandal.
(India Wins Freedom:Maulana Azad pg 176-177)

The inclusion of Mr. Mandal appears to be an assertion by the League of the right to appoint a non Muslim belonging to the third largest minority in India, and secondly to make good the reference in the League’s resolution of the Working Committee of the need to protect not only the interests of the Muslims, but also the other communities.

362

If Congress, Jinnah alleged, divided the Muslims, he would divide Harijans. Now that the League had agreed to join the Government, the Congress had to reconstitute the Government to accommodate the representatives of the League. Mr. Sarat Chandra Bose, Sir Shafaat Ahmed and syed Ali Zaheer were asked to resign. Regarding portfolios, Lord Wavell suggested that one of the major portfolios should go to Muslim League. His own suggestion was that the Congress should give Home Department, but Sardar Patel, who was Home member vehemently opposed the suggestion and said that he would rather leave the Government than give up the Home Department. Azad was of the view that law and order was essentially a provincial subject. In the picture envisaged in the Cabinet Mission Plan, the centre would have very little to do in the field. As such, the Home Ministry in the centre would not have much importance in the new set up. Azad was therefore in favour of accepting Wavell’s suggestion. When Sardar Patel refused to part with the Home portfolio, Rafi Ahmed Kidwai suggested that the Congress should offer Finance portfolio to the Muslim League. Kidwai thought because of the technical nature of the subject, the League would refuse the offer. If this happened, the Congress would lose nothing. If on the other hand the League nominee accepted the portfolio, he would soon make fool of himself. Either way the Congress would stand to gain. Sardar Patel jumped on the idea and gave his strongest support. Azad tried to point out that Finance

363

was the key to Government and the Congress would have to face major difficulties if Finance was under the control of the League. Sardar Patel countered that the League would not be able to manage Finance and would have to decline offer. Azad did not feel happy at the decision but since all others agreed, he submitted. The Viceroy was informed that the Congress would offer Finance to a nominee of the Muslim League. When Lord Wavell conveyed the decision of the Congress to Jinnah, he said that he would give his reply the next day. He had decided to nominate Liaqat Ali as the chief representative of the League in the Cabinet, but he was doubtful whether Liaquat Ali would adequately handle Finance. Some Muslim officers of the Finance Department heard this news and they immediately contacted Jinnah. They told him that offer of the Congress was a real windfall and marked a great victory for the League. With the control of Finance Department, the League would have a say in every department of the Government. They would give every help to Mr. Liaqat Ali and ensure that he discharged his duties effectively. Jinnah accepted the proposal and accordingly, Liaqat Ali became the member for Finance. Congress soon realized that it had committed a great mistake in handing over Finace to the Muslim League. When Liaqat Ali became Finance Member, every proposal of every department was subject to scrutiny by his department. In addition he had the power of veto. Not a peon could be appointed in any department without the sanction of the Finance Department. Sardar Patel realized that he had played into the hands of the Muslim League by offering him Finance, but

364

it was too late. Whatever proposal he made either rejected or modified beyond recognition by Liaqat Ali. His persistent interference made it difficult for any Congress member to function effectively. The Interim Government was born in an atmosphere of suspicion and distrust between the Congress and the League and it went on increasing. After the Interim Government was formed it had been agreed that all the members would meet informally before the formal meeting of the Cabinet. It was felt that if members had informal discussions among themselves, it would help to develop the convention that the Viceroy was only constitutional head. These formal meetings used to be held by turn in the rooms of the different members of the Council, but very often Jawaharlal asked the other members to tea. Usually invitations were sent by Jawaharlal’s private Secretary. Liaqat Ali took great objection to this and said that he felt humiliated that a private Secretary to Jawaharlal should ask him to tea. Besides, he did not agree that Jawaharlal had any right as Vice-President of the Council to hold such informal meetings. This is a small incident but shows the length to which the Muslim League representatives were prepared to go in their non-cooperation with the Congress. Soon after the Interim Government was formed, Jawaharlal issued orders for stopping aerial bombardment of tribesmen in South Waziristhan. In the meantime he was reeiving official reports that a large section of the people in the Frontier were against Congress and the Khan Brothers. Local officers repeatedly said that the Congress had largely lost local support and the people had transferred their loyalty from

365

Congress to the League. Jawaharlal was of the view that these reports were not correct and were fabricated by British officers. He said that he would tour in the Frontier and assess the situation for himself. Azad advised Jawaharlal not to take any hasty action, he said his tour in the Frontier would give the dissident elements an opportunity of organizing their opposition to the Congress. It would therefore be better if he postponed his visit till a more appropriate time. Gandhi also supported Azad’s view, but Jawaharlal insisted and said that whatever be the consequences he would go. When Jawaharlal reached Peshawar, he was shocked to know that Khan brothers did not enjoy as much support in the Frontier as it was thought in Delhi. He was greeted with black flags and anti-slogans at the airport. Dr. Khan Saheb and other ministers who had come to receive Jawaharlal were themselves under police protection and proved completely ineffective. As Jawaharlal came out slogans were raised against him and some people in the mob wanted to attack his car. Dr. Khan Saheb was so worried that he took out his revolver and threatened to shoot. Only under this threat did the crowd give way and the cars came out under police escort. The next day Jawaharlal left for a tour of the tribal areas. He found everywhere a large section of the people against him. In some places his car was stoned and one stone hit him on the forehead. After his return, Lord Wavell expressed his regret about the whole affair and wished that an enquiry should be made into the conduct of the officers. However, Jawaharlal did not agree to take an action against anybody.

366

The League members of the Executive Council were thwarting the Congress at every step. They were in the Government and yet against it. In fact, they were in a position to sabotage every move Congress took. The powers of the finance member were being stretched to the limit and a new shock awaited the Congress members when the budget for the next year was presented by Liaqat Ali. It was declared policy of the Congress that economic inequalities must be removed and capitalist society replaced by one of the socialist pattern. This was also the stand in the Congress election manifesto. The Congress members felt that the Government of India should take strong action to recover taxes, which were due but had remained unpaid. Liaqat Ali framed a budget, which was ostensibly based on Congress declaration, but in fact, it was a clever dvice for discrediting the Congress. He proposed taxation measures which have impoverished all rich men and done paramount damage to commerce and industy. Simulteneously he brought forward a proposal for appointing a commission to enquire into allegations regarding unpaid taxes and recovere them from businessmen. When Liaqat Ali raised the matter in the Cabinet, he openly said that his proposals were based on the declarations of responsible Congress leaders. He did not, however, give details so that on general grounds the Congress agreed with him in principle. Having secured assent in principle, he proceeded to frame specific measures that were not only extreme but calculated to harm the national economy.

367

Rajgopalachari and Sardar Patel felt that Liaqat Ali was more concerned with harassing industrialists and businessmen than in serving the interests of the county. They thought that his main motive was to harm the business community as the majority of them were Hindus, Rajaji openly said in the Cabinet that he was opposed to Liaqat Ali’s proposals and hinted that the proposals were based on communal considerations.
(India Wins Freedom by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad pg 190) 176-

The League Members of the Interim Government behaved and functioned as if Pakistan had already become fait accompli. One of them declared that the events in East Bengal were but a dress rehearsal for his party’s countrywide struggle to force India’s division. Liaqat Ali Khan, who led the League wing in the Executive Council, announced that the Interim Government consisted of Congress bloc and Muslim League bloc each functioning under separate leadership.
(The Indian Triumvirate by V.B. Kulkarni pg 200)

Isphani, Jinnah’s ‘personal envoy’ in America said, “The League’s participation only means that the struggle for Pakistan will now be carried on within as well as without the Government. From the start, the League members acted as a parallel Government and ignored Nehru’s status as Vice-President of the Council.” Jinnah publicly said; “If he (Nehru) can only come down to earth and think coolly and calmly, he must understand that he is neither the Prime Minister, nor is it a Nehru Government, he is only the member of the External Affairs and Commonwealth Department.” The coalition Government was a house at war.

368

(Rajaji story by Rajmohan Gandhi, pg 126-127)

Gandhi declared that the League’s entry into the Interim Government had not been straight. He was forced to wonder whether the League members had come into the Government also to fight. The League’s entry into Interim Government did not bring about the expected lull in communal violence. Even as the League joined the Government, there occurred in the districts of Noakhali and Trippura in East Bengal one of the worst communal riots ever seen in India, all the more brutal, because, like the communal killings in Bihar, and in the Punjab in March 1947, they were organized. There was evidence of organization behind all aspects of the troubles, which included murder, rape, conversions and forced marriages. The method of attacks was consistent. First, a Muslim group approached a Hindu house and told the family that if their wealth was given to this group, they would be protected from other Muslims. Upon the departure of this group, another Muslim group would arrive and tell the Hindus that the only way to escape with their lives was to accept conversion to Islam. Local Maulvis traveled with the second group to perform the conversion. Hindus, who resisted were murdered, as were those with influence in the district. A third group would complete the looting and set fire to the Hindu houses. The Hindus who had been forcibly converted were given white caps with ‘Pakistan Zindabad’ written on them so that they would be protected from further attacks. Officials found local Muslims sympathetic to the forced conversions, and some were shown the caps which the converted Hindus were made to wear after the conversion had taken place.

369

Hindu women were raped, their conchshells were broken and their caste marks were erased from their forehead.
(The Origin of Partition of India by Anita Inder Singh, pg 195196)

Prime Minister Attlee extended personal invitation to Nehru and Jinnah to come to London for a fresh round of talks. So accompanied by the Viceroy, Nehru, Baldev Singh, Jinnah and Liaqat Ali Khan arrived in London on 3rd December 1946. Dr. B.N.Pande, in his introduction to “A Centenary History of Indian National Congress” writes: “Jinnah at this stage, was passing through a mental metamorphosis. The Indian Civil war had taught him the awesome lesson that, even if he got his Pakistan, there would yet be millions of Muslims in Hindustan whose existence might be perpetually threatened by Hindu antagonism. The genie of communalism, which he had himself released to do its worst would prove hard to contain in the forceable future, or rather might continue to grow after the birth of Pakistan. ‘The exchange of population will have to be considered seriously as far as possible, he had thought after the Bihar tragedy.’ But the enormity of the population discouraged him from further advocating that idea. In an overall perspective of the entire situation, he was having second thoughts concerning whether a return to the Cabinet Mission Plan might not be of greater advantage to Muslim areas as well as Muslim populations. It was at this time that he was invited to London to meet Attlee. “Throughout the brief duration of the London Conference from 3rd to 6th December, Jinnah did not manifest his real self but was in rather a subdued mood.

370

In contrast, Nehru was vigorous in charging the League with seeking to obtain its ends by violence and playing a negative role within the Interim Government. Wavell was surprised to see Nehru’s frequent and sudden outbursts during his discussions with the British leaders. He had a long duel with Cripps, and at one time he threatened the British saying that the Congress was a revolutionary party. He complained that the approach of the Muslim League to join the Interim Government had been made over his head, and alarmed the Viceroy by saying that he would put everything to vote in the Cabinet and make the Viceroy’s position impossible. The London Conference produced no result. It reminded a disgusted Wavell of a poem of Browning which began, “Let them fight it out, friends: things have gone too far.” Nehru and Baldev Singh returned to India in a hurry on 7th December since the Constituent Assembly was to meet on 9th December, without the League members of course. Purposefully enough, Jinnah and Liaqat stayed on in England for further discussions with their hosts. And, quite surprisingly, within a few days, Jinnah was once again in his former form, announcing with greater vigour and determination that he would agree to nothing but a full-fledged Pakistan of his original design. The most surprised man in India at Jinnah’s extraordinary revival was Sardar Patel. Closely scrutinizing the former’s latest trends of thought before the London negotiations, the Sardar had come to believe that there was a possibility of the League accepting a united India with autonomy for the proposed Pakistan provinces. But Jinnah’s reversion to the theory of

371

Partition while still in London was most intriguing. Patel suspected Stafford Cripps as being behind the game and wrote to him agrily: “You called the League delegation there to London at a time when there was some relization violence is a game at which both parties can play and the mild Hindu also, when driven to desperation, can retaliate as bruttaly as a fanatic Muslim. Just when the time for settlement was reached Jinnah got the invitation, and he was able to convince the Muslims once again that he has been able to get more concessions by creating trouble and violence. You must have seen what Jinnah has said in London immediately after the debate. He swears by Pakistan and everything conceded to him is to be used as a lever to work to that end. You wish that we should agree in this mad dream. All of us here feel that there has been a betrayal. “The real brain behind the scene, however, was Winston Churchill, playing a greater part than Cripps or anybody else. In this connection, the Quaid-e-Azam Jinnah Papers reveal an interesting episode. When Jinnah decided to discuss the matter with Churchill who was the Leader of the Opposition, the latter thought it judicious not to come out openly into the picture because of his fear of the Congress reaction. Yet, he wanted to be his invisible mentor at the most crucial point. Unbelievable though it seems, Churchill named himself Miss E.A.Gilliatt while in correspondence with Jinnah. From 28 Hyde Park Gate in London, he wrote the following top-secret letter to Quaid-e-Azam on 11th December 1946: “My dear Mr. Jinnah, I should greatly like to accept your kind invitation to luncheon on

372

December 12. I feel, however, that it would perhaps be wiser for us not to be associated publicly at this juncture. I greatly valued our talk the other day, and I now enclose the address to which any telegrams you may wish to send me can be sent without attracting attention in India. I will always sign myself “Gilliatt.” Perhaps you will let me know to what address I should telegraph to you and how you will sign yourself. The address to which Jinnah was advised to communicate was Miss E.A.Gilliatt, 6 Westminster Gardens, London S.W.1 Brief though it is, the letter is clear evidence of the Churchill-Jinnah deal in those final days of the Indian tangle. As before, Churchill’s visible or invisible hand operated in building up Jinnah and in laying the foundation of Pakistan. Jinnah returned to India in January 1947. On 20th January 1947 the Constituent Assembly of India met to proceed with its great work. At the end of the month, the Working Committee of the Muslim League, meeting in Karachi, raised the demand that the Constituent Assembly be dissolved. Communal disturbances by then were playing havoc in the country, having spread into the Punjab. The Congress, in retaliation to League’s proposal about the Constituent Assembly, demanded that the Viceroy dismiss the League members from the Interim Government. Wavell advised Nehru on 1st February not to invite chaotic condition by forcing out the Muslim League from the Central Government, which the Congress was in a position to do. This crisis began to deepen as the administration was more or less coming to a standstill. By then, the Labour Government had only one option left to them-to let the world know that the British

373

wanted to quit, leaving India to the Indian parties to settle its fate. Thus there came the ultimate declaration of Prime Minister Attlee on 20th February 1947 announcing the date before which the British-Indian Empire would cease to exist.”
(A Centenary History of Indian Nationasl Congress: B.N.Pande, pg 87-90)

Divide and Quit: Prime Minister Clement Richard Attlee presented British Government’s White Paper on the constitutional future of India in the House of Commons on 20 th February 1947. After presenting the White Paper, Attlee said that His Majesty has been pleased to approve, as successor to Lord Wavell, the appointment of Admiral Viscount Mountbatten, who will be entrusted with the task of transferring to Indian hands responsibility of the Government of British India in a manner that will best ensure the future happiness and prosperity of India. The change of office will take place during March. Attlee also said that Britain would transfer power to responsible Indian hands by a date not later than June, 1948. Giving his first reaction to Attlee’s statement, Gandhi wrote to Jawaharlal Nehru on 24th February 1947: “Evidently, I had anticipated practically the whole of it….My interpretation of the speech of Attlee is this: 1. Independence will be recognized of those parts which desire it and will do without British protection; 2. 3. The British will remain where they are wanted; This may lead to Pakistan for those provinces or portions which may want it.

374

No one will be forced one way or the other. The Congress provinces, if they are wise, will get what they want; 4. Much will depend upon what the Constituent Assembly will do and what you as the Interim Government are able to do; 5. If the British Government are and able to remain sincere, the declaration is good. Otherwise, it is dangerous. On the same day, Nehru wrote to Gandhi: You must have seen my statement on the new declaration made by the British Government. The statement was considered carefully by all our collegues in the Interim Government minus, of course, the Muslim League…Mr Attlee’s statement contains much that is indefinite and likely to give trouble. But I am convinced that it is, in the final analysis, a brave and definite statement. It meets our off-repeated demand for quitting India. …Matters will move swiftly now or, at any rate after Mountbatten comes…The Working Committee is meeting on the 5th March. Your advice at this critical moment would help us greatly. But you are too far away for consultation and you refuse to move out of East Bengal. Still, if you could convey to us your ideas on the subject, we would be very grateful.” In his next letter on 28th February 1947, Nehru wrote: “The Working Committee is meeting here soon and all of us were anxious to have you here on the occasion. We considered the question of sending you a joint telegram, appealing you to come. But we decided ultimately not to send it. We felt sure that you would not

375

come at this stage and our telegram would only be an embarrassment. “But though we are not sending the telegram, we feel very strongly that your advice during the coming critical weeks is most necessary. It is possible, of course, for one or two of us to visit you, but that is not satisfactory way of doing things. It is full discussion among all of us that we would have liked to have. At present, it is exceedingly difficult for any of us to leave Delhi, even for two or three days. For several to go together would upset work completely. There is the budget in the Assembly, the negotiations with the princes, the change in Viceroys and so many other things that demand constant attention. So we cannot go away and if you will not come, how are we to meet?” Gandhi’s persistent refusal to come to Delhi, till his mission in Noakhali had borne fruit, created a dilemma for the Congress leaders. It was vividly expressed in one of Nehru’s letters: “I know that we must learn to rely upon ourselves and not run to you for help on every occasion. But we have got into this bad habit and we do often feel that if you had been easier of access, our difficulties would have been less.” But Gandhi’s position remained unchanged: “I know that if I were free, I could take my share in trying to solve the various problems that arise in our country. But I feel that I should be useless unless I could do something here….We are all in the hands of the Power which we call God.” In the end, it was neither his nor Nehru’s will that prevailed but, as he had put it to Nehru, “the power

376

which we call God.” He was decreed to be neither in Noakhali nor in Delhi, but in Bihar.
(Mahatma Gandhi: The Last Phase-1, pp 565-68)

Mountbatten arrived in Delhi on 22nd March, 1947 with plenipotentiary powers from His Majesty’s Government and was sworn in as Viceroy and Governor General on 24th March. He broke tradition by making a speech at the swearing in ceremony. He said that his was not a normal Viceroyalty. His Majesty’s Government were resolved to transfer power by June 1948, and since new constitutional arrangements must be made and many complicated questions of administration resolved, it meant that a solution had to be reached within the next few months. He believed that all the political leaders in India felt, as he did, the urgency of the task before them. He hoped soon to be in close consultation with them; he would give them all the help he could. He appealed to everyone to do his best to avoid any word or action, which might lead to further communal bitterness or add to the toll of innocent victims.” He concluded: “I am under no illusion about the difficulty of my task. I shall need the greatest goodwill of the greatest possible number, and I am asking India today for that goodwill.”
(Transfer of Power in India by V.P.Menon, pg 408)

In the very first meeting with Mountbatten on 1st April, Gandhi suggested that the Viceroy should dismiss the Interim Government and submitted his following plan for consideration: 1. Mr. Jinnah should be given option of forming the Government. 2. The selection of the Cabinet should be left entirely to Mr. Jinnah. The members may be all

377

Muslims or non-Muslims, or they may be representatives of all classes and creeds of the Indian people. 3. If Mr. Jinnah accepted this offer, the Congress would guarantee to cooperate freely, and sincerely, so long as all measures that Mr. Jinnah’s Cabinet bring forward are in the interests of the Indian people as a whole. 4. The sole refree of what is or is not in the interest of India as a whole will be Lord Mountbatten, in his personal capacity. 5. Mr. Jinnah must stipulate, on behalf of the League or any other parties represented in the Cabinet formed by him that so far as he or they are concerned, they will do their utmost to preserve peace through out India. 6. There shall be no national guards or any other form of private army. 7. Within the frame work hereof, Mr. Jinnah will be perfectly free to present for acceptance a scheme of Pakistan even before the transfer of power, provided, however, that he is successful in his appeal to reason and not to the force of arms, which he abjures for all time for his purpose. Thus, there will be no compulsion in this matter over a province or a part thereof. 8. In the Assembly, the Congress has a decisive majority. But the Congress shall never use that majority against the League policy simply because its identification with the League, but will give its hearty support to every measure brought forward by the League Government,

378

provided that it is in the interest of the whole of India. Whether it is in such interest or not shall be decided by Lord Mountbatten as a man and not in his representative capacity.

9. If Mr. Jinnah rejects this offer, the same offer
should be made Mutatis Mutandis to the Congress. (Mahatma Gandhi: Last Phase-II, p 79) Gandhi in his prayer meeting on the same day said: “….I was with Lord Mountbatten for more than two hours yesterday and today I talked with the Viceroy for two hours. He said he was eager to hand over this county even to a single Parsi, if he came forward to take it, not to mention a Hindu or a Muslim. Why should I not listen to one who comes to me with such honest intentions? The British have done us enough harm in the past. But Lord Mountbatten has done no harm. He says that he would like to be a servant right from today, if it were possible. But it is not proper that he should run away while we are fighting with each other. He after all, belongs to a brave race. Why should he run away? He is thinking of the manner in which he should leave the country. He is making good efforts. He is proceeding honourably. If we, too, proceed will accordingly, happen what If has never before to happened now. anyone wants

accommodate a fellow who would not conduct himself honourably but would act barbarously. Let him learn from me how to do it. I am prisoner of the Viceroy till Friday. Jawahar also wants to detain me here. After three days, I shall tell you everything. I do not hide any anyhing. But what can possibly happen? Whatever the

379

Congress decides will be done; nothing will be according to what I say.” Gandhi further said: “My writ runs no more. If it did, the tragedies in the Punjab, Bihar and Noakhali would not have happened. No one listens to me any more. I am a small man. True, there was a time when mine was a big voice. Then everyone obeyed what I said; now neither the Congress nor the Hindus nor the Muslims listen to me. Where is the Congress today? It is disintegrating. I am crying in the wilderness. Today everyone can forsake me, but God will not. He has his devotee tested. An English poem written by Francis Thompson describes God as the “Hound of Heaven.” He is the retriever of Dharma, i.e. He seeks out Dharma. It would be enough if He hears me.”
(The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi Vol. LXXXVII, p186)

Gandhi

strove

with

the

Congress

for

the

acceptance of his plan. He was opposed to the whole logic of partition. He said that the partition would solve none of the problems. On the contrary, it would accentuate those that were already there and create fresh ones. All except, Azad told the Mahatma that the partition was enescapable. His disciples were eager; their ages discouraged waiting. He could not easily disown men with whom he had shared hopes, sorrows and struggle for thirty years and into whom he had built much. One final revolutionary movement was within his sight, but it needed a second front of leadership, which was not at hand. A combination that could be an alternative to Nehru, Patel, Rajaji and Prasad did not exist.
(Rajaji Story by Rajmohan Gandhi, pg 133)

380

Gandhi wrote a letter to Mountbatten on 12th April 1947 in which he said: “…I had several short talks with Pandit Nehru and an hour’s talk with him alone; and then several members of the Congress Working Committee last night about the formula I had skecthed before you and which I had filled in for them with all the implications. I am sorry to say that I failed to carry any of them with me except Badsha Khan. “I do not know that having failed to carry both the head and heart of Pandit Nehru with me, I would have wanted to carry the matter further. But Panditji was so good that he would not be satisfied until the whole plan was discussed with the few members of the Congress Working Committee who were present. I felt sorry that I could not convince them for the correctness of my plan, from every point of view. Nor could they dislodge me from my position, although I had not closed my mind against wevery argument. Thus, I have to ask you to omit me from your consideration. “Congressmen, who are in the Interim Government are stalwarts, seasoned servants of the nation, and therefore, so far as the Congress point of view is concerned, they will be complete advisers. “I would still love to take place that the late C.F.Andrews took. He represented no one but himself. And if you ever need my service on its merit, it will be always at your disposal. “In the circumstances above mentioned, subject to your consent, I propose, if possible, to leave tomorrow for Patna.”
(Mahatma Gandhi: The Last Phase-II, p 84)

381

Mountbatten called Jinnah for discussion on 8th April 1947. After discussion the Viceroy noted: “I invited Mr. Jinnah to put forward his argument for partition. He recited the classic ones. I then pointed out that his remarks applied also to the partition of the Punjab and Bengal, and that by sheer logic if I accepted his arguments in the case of India as a whole, I had also to apply them in the case of these two provinces. Whilst admitting my logic, he expressed himself most upset at my trying to give him a ‘moth-eaten’ Pakistan. He said that this demand for partitioning of the Punjab and Bengal was a bluff on the part of Congress to try and frighten him off Pakistan. He was not to be frightened off so easily; and he would be sorry if I were taken in by the Congress bluff.’ I replied, ‘I would not be taken in; because if I agreed to such partition, it would be on your able advocacy; but I could not of course allow your theories to stop short at the provinces.’ He was most distressed, and said that it would greatly weaken his Pakistan, and appealed to me not to destroy the unity of Bengal and the Punjab, which had national characteristic in common: common history, common ways of life; and where the Hindus have stronger feelings as Bengalis and Punjabis than they have as members of the Congress.” Next day a dejected Jinnah returned to tell the Viceroy that nothing would bring peace to India except a full Pakistan since anything less would produce further strife and blood-shed. But the Viceroy expressed his categorical opinion that it was impossible for him to agree to the partition of India without also agreeing to the partition of the provinces where the same majorityminority problem remained. That afternoon Mountbatten

382

inflicted on the crestfallen Quaid-e-Azam a long lecture on the need of keeping India united. He painted the picture of the greatness that India could achieve-‘four hundred million people of different races and creeds, all bound together by a central Union Government, with all the economic strength that would accrue to them from increased industrialization, playing a great part in world affairs as the most progressive single entity in the Far East.’ Jinnah did not show any sign of being attracted towards the prospects of a united independent India even under his own Prime Ministership since, as he said, ‘the behaviour of the Hindus had made it impossible for the Muslims to share in this,’ but went back with the sad thoughts of a reduced Pakistan which the Congress had injected into the Viceroy’s mind. The emerging concept of a moth-eaten Pakistan was considered in Congress circles as a substantial victory. ‘The object in view,’ observed the Manchester Guardian, ‘clearly stated by many pro-Congress journals is to reduce the Muslim majority provinces to such small dimensions that the idea of Pakistan should no longer appear a workable or attractive to the most ardent Muslim.’ To Sardar Patel it seemed that the moment the Viceroy announced the partition of Bengal, Muslims of that province would desert the League in order to preserve the unity of Bengal. He told Mountbatten that the same thing might happen in the Punjab, and it would not be unlikely that there would be revolt of the League against Mr. Jinnah if he had nothing better than the Sind, and possibly half of the Punjab to offer them for Pakistan, if Congress still retained their hold on N.W.F.P. Maulana Azad, still hopeful of a united India, came to feel

383

that a truncated Pakistan would bring disaster to the Muslims. And that Jinnah would be committing suicide by accepting it.”
(A Centenary History of Indian National Congress: B.N.Pande, pg 93-95)

On overall discussions with the leaders, Lord Mountbatten was convinced that there was no prospect of an agreed solution on the basis of the Cabinet Mission Plan and attempt to resurrect it was useless. So an alternative plan for the transfer of power had to be found and implemented without loss of time, in order to ease the growing political tension. Accordingly, he drew up an outline of an alternative plan, the broad basis of which was the demission of authority to the provinces, or to such confideration of provinces as might decide to group themselves in the intervening period before the actual transfer of power takes place. The plan provided that the members of the Legislative Assemblies of Bengal and the Punjab should meet separately in two parts, i.e. representatives of the predominantly Muslim areas, and representatives of the predominantly non-Muslim areas, and if both sections of each of these Assemblies voted for partition of Bengal, the predominantly Muslim district of Sylhet in Assam would have option of joining the Muslim province. The plan also envisaged the holding of an election in the North-West Frontier Province to ascertain the wishes of the people of the province. Lord Mountbatten placed his plan before the Governors at a conference held on 15th and 16th April. Consultations with the Governors gave him a good deal of idea of the colossal administrative difficulties involved in the transfer of power based on partition. But the problem

384

that actually confronted Mountbatten was, if it became inevitable to divide the country then how was this to be brought about with the willing concurrence of the parties concerned? The greater the insistence by Jinnah on his province wise Pakistan, the stronger was the Congress demand that he should not be allowed to carry unwilling minorities with him. Nehru, in a public speech on 20th April declared: “The Muslim League can have Pakistan, if they wish to have it, but on the condition that they do not take away the other parts of India, which do not wish to join Pakistan.” Dr. Rajendra Prasad, President of the Constituent Assembly, on 28th April said: “While we have accepted the Cabinet Mission’s Statement of May 16, which contemplated a union of different provinces and states within the country, it may be that the union may not comprise all provinces. If that unfortunately comes to pass, we shall have to be content with a constitution for a part of it. In that case, we can and should insist that one principle will apply to all parts of the country and no constitution will be forced upon any unwilling part of it. This may mean not only the division of India, but division of some provinces. For this we must be prepared and the Assembly may have to draw up a constitution based on such a division.” In Bengal, the demand for creation of a separate province of Bengal was gaining momentum. It was endorsed by the provincial Congress and the Hindu Maha Sabha. At this stage the Premier of Bengal, Suhrawardy came out with a proposal for a sovereign, independent and undivided Bengal in divided India. Sarat Chandra Bose, the left wing leader, supported the proposal, but it

385

received little support from either the Muslim League or the Congress. Jinnah issued a statement that the proposal for the partition of Bengal and the Punjab was a sinister move actuated by spite and bitterness. He said that the principle underlying the Muslim demand for Pakistan was that the Muslims should have a national home and a national state in their home lands comprising six provinces of the Punjab, North-West Frontier Province, Sind, Baluchistan, Bengal and Assam. If the Punjab and Bengal partitioned, all the other provinces would have to be cut up in a similar way. Such a process would strike at the root of the administrative, economic and political life of the provinces which for nearly a century had been developed and built up on that basis and had grown and were functioning as autonomous provinces. He suggested that an exchange of population would sooner or later have to take place and that this could be effectively carried out by respective Governments in Pakistan and Hindustan. He finally demanded the division of the defence forces and stressed that the states of Pakistan and Hindustan should be made absolutely free, independent and sovereign. Jinnah’s statement evoked strong reaction from Dr. Rajendra Prasad, who said: “The demand for the division of Bengal and the Punjab was in the terms of the Muslim League’s Lahore Resolution of 1940 and that it could not claim any areas which were not numerically in a majority. He said that if there was to be a division of India, then it should be as complete and thorough as possible, including the division of the Punjab and Bengal, so that there might not be any room for contention or

386

conflict. If it required the division of the defence forces, that should also be brought about, and the sooner the better.” The communal tension in the country was mounting. Serious communal outbreaks and incidents of stabbing and arson were occurring in various districts of the Punjab. In the North-West Frontier Province, the Muslim League agitation against the Congress ministry had taken a turn for the worse. Lord Mountbatten convened a conference which was attended by Nehru, Governor Sir Olaf Caroe and Dr. Khansaheb, and as a result, the provincial Government decided to release all political prisoners not charged with violence, who had been arrested in connection with the Muslim League agitation and to withdraw the ban on public meetings. But backed by Jinnah, the League leaders in detention refused to get released, or to suspend agitation, unless the Congress ministry resigned or general elections were ordered. In the face of the progressively deteriorating situation in the country, Mountbatten felt that if the procedure for the transfer of power was not finalized quickly, there was a possibility that at least in some parts of the country, there would be no authority to whom power could be transferred. He revised his tentative plan in the light of his discussions with the Governors and party leaders and sent this revised plan to London with Lord Ismay and George Allen Campbell on 2nd May. Mountbatten urged that His Majesty’s Government approval should be communicated to him by 10th May. His purpose was to call a meeting of the party leaders on 17th May to ascertain their reactions. In the afternoon of

387

the same day, he would also see the members of the State Negotiating Committee and apprise them of the plan. If the party leaders did not accept the plan and were themselves unable to produce an agreed alternative solution, His Majesty’s Government would demit power in accordance with its own plan. Lord Mountbatten received back his plan from London on 8th May finalized and approved by the British Cabinet. A press communiqué was issued to the effect that the Viceroy had invited Nehru, Jinnah, Patel, Liqat Ali Khan, Baldev Singh to meet him in Delhi on the morning of 17th May, when he would present to them the plan which His Majesty’s Government had approved for the transfer of power to Indian hands. He also invited the members of the States Negotiating Committee to meet him on the same afternoon. On the night of 10th May, Lord Mountbatten showed Nehru the Plan as he had received it from London. Nehru turned it down most vehemently and made it clear that the Congress would in no circumstances accept it. Nehru sent a note to the Viceroy, embodying his reactions to the plan. He said that the picture presented by the proposals was an ominious one. Not only do they menace India but also they endanger the future relations between the Britain and India. Instead of producing any sense of certainty, security and stability, they would encourage disruptive tendencies everywhere and chaos and weakness. They would particularly endanger important strategic areas. In these proposals the whole approach had been changed completely. Starting witht the rejection of an

388

Indian Union as the successor to power, they invited the claims of large numbers of successor States who would be permitted to unite if they so wished into two or more States. Nehru had no doubt that a pronouncement by His Majesty’s Government on the lines proposed would provoke wide and deep resentment all over India and that no responsible leader, out side the Muslim League, would be able to persuade the country either to accept or to acquiesce the proposals. Nehru further held that the present proposals involved a complete retraction by His Majesty’s Government of its previous decisions and pledges, the virtual scraping of the Constituent Assembly and casting overboard the Cabinet Mission Plan. The inevitable consequences of the proposals would be to invite the Balkanization of India; to provoke certain civil conflict and add to violence and disorder; to cause a further breakdown of the central authority, which alone could present the growing chaos and demoralize the army, the police and the central services. The proposal that each of the successor States should conclude independent treaties, presumably also with His Majesty’s Government was likely to create many ‘Ulsters’ in India which would be looked upon as so many bases on Indian soil and would create almost unbridgeable gulf between national India and the British people. Nehru emphasized that acquiescence on the part of the Congress in the splitting of those areas which were predominantly League in their loyalty was in no way wise and acquiescence in throwing overboard the All-India basis of future settlement. It was only a stretching of the Cabinet Mission plan to make opting out operable in

389

keeping with its oft-repeated policy of non-coercion. The partition of provinces to which the Congress had agreed was not at all inconsistent with an All-India Union of both separated with the retention of separate identities. Nehru dertermination in described the case the of so-called Baluchistan selfas

‘preposterous.’ It left the future of that province to a single individual who would be chosen by a group of sardars and nominated persons who obviously represented a vested semi-feudal element. Baluchistan had an importance as a strategic frontier of India and its future could not be dealt with in so partial and casual manner. There could be no objection for the surrender of a part of Assam to East Bengal, if the people concerned so wished, but some such procedure should be equally applicable to parts of Sind. Nehru further said: “If it was indeed His Majesty’s Government’s sole purpose to ascertain the wishes of the people of India and to tranfer power with the least possible dislocation, the purpose would not be advanced or achieved by these proposals. Before the people chose, they should have a proper picture of what they were choosing. Two or three vague proposals with no clear background would produce nothing but confusion, and the transfer of power, instead of being made without dislocation, would be obstructed by violence, by a mass of complications and by weakness of the Cabinet Government and its organs.” Nehru went on: “If there was to be any genuine assessment of opinion, the only practical way was for two constitutions, two appeals and two prospects to be placed before the people. This meant that the Constitution-

390

making on the basis of an All-India Union with full freedom for provinces and effective guarantees for all. In the same way, the League could prepare its own schemes and present its own proposals on an equal level, and the two constitutions could be presented to all the provinces of India on a plebiscite basis on such terms as might be agreed upon.” Nehru concluded: “Until these decisions are made, the Government of India must remain as one, In view of the impending British withdrawl, the coalition forming the Central Government must be a Cabinet with joint responsibility based upon full dominion autonomy. It may be made clear that the Central Government will not take any step to prejudice self determnation or subsequent partition and as such other guarantees as are necessary may also be given so as to assure the League in regard to certain agreed matters.” Lord Mountbatten held a meeting with Nehru. He explained to Nehru as to how the new plan would meet his objections. At the end of the meeting Mountbatten asked him whether the Congress would accept a plan based on their discussion. Nehru replied that he would have to see the draft before he could commit himself. In view of this new development, it was decided that the conference of party leaders which had been summoned to meet on 17th May, at Simla, should be postponed to 2nd June and a communiqué was issued to that effect. Lord Mountbatten returned to Delhi from Simla on 14 May. He had already apprised the Secretary of State of the development in Simla and communicated to him an outline of the alternatives plan. Immediately on his
th

391

arrival in Delhi, he received an invitation from the Prime Minister Attlee to go to London. The Viceroy felt that he should get the consent of the leaders of the three parties to the alternative plan before leaving for London. He asked V.P. Menon to prepare a draft, “Heads of Agreement,” to be shown to the leaders for their acceptance. Heads of Agreement-V.P.Menon Plan: On 16th May, Menon drew up a draft, “Heads of Agreement,” the features of which were as follows: a) That the leaders agree to the procedure laid down for ascertaining the wishes of the people whether there should be a division of India or not; b) That in the event of the decision being taken that there should be one central authority in India, the powers should be transferred to the existing Constituent Assembly on a Dominion Status basis; c) That in the event of a decision that there should be two Sovereign States in India, the Central Government of each State should take over power and responsibility to their respective Constituent Assemblies, again on the Dominion Status basis. d) That the transfer of power in either case should be on the basis of the Government of India Act 1935, modified to conform to the Dominion Status position. e) That the Governor-General should be common to both the Dominions and that the present Governor General should be reappointed. f) That a Commission should be appointed for the demarcation of boundries in the event of a decision in favour of partition;

392

g) That the Governors of the provinces should be appointed on the recommendation of the respective Central Governments; h) In the event of two Dominions coming into being the Armed Forces in India should be divided between them. The units sould be allocated according to the territorial basis of recruitment and would be under the control of the respective Governments. In the case of mixed units, the seperation and redistribution should be entrusted to a Committee consisting of Field Marshal Sir Claude Auchinleck and the Chiefs of the General Staff of the two Dominions, under the supervision of the Council consisting of the Governor General and the two Defence Ministers. This Council would automatically cease to exist as soon as the process of division was completed.
(Transfer of power in India by V.P. Menon, pg 426-427)

After the Viceroy had approved the draft, “Heads of Agreement,” Menon took it to Nehru, Patel and Baldev Singh and had discussions with them; Sir Eric Mieville did like wise with Jinnah and Liaqat Ali Khan. Thereafter the Viceroy consulted Nehru, Patel on behalf of the Congress; Jinnah and Liaqat Ali Khan on behalf of the League; and Baldev Singh on behalf of the Sikhs. In the light of their discussions the new plan was finalized. The Viceroy was anxious to obtain the acceptance of it by the leaders in writing if possible. Nehru readily complied on behalf of the Congress. In his letter, Nehru stated that the Congress accepted the plan generally, but that its acceptance was strictly subject to other parties agreeing to it as a final settlement and to no further claims being put forward.

393

Jinnah and Liaqat Ali seemed willing to accept the general principles of the plan, but refused to state their acceptance in writing. On 18th May, Lord Mountbatten left for London with Menon. The Cabinet approved the new plan and finalized the statement of His Majest’s Government. It was decided that Mountbatten should present this plan to the Indian leaders on 2nd June. Mountbatten returned to India on 31st May 1947. During the absence of Mountbatten from India, Jinnah made a fantastic demand of a 800 mile corridor to link West and East Pakistan. His demand was carefully timed and was well advertised in the press of the West and was intended to exert maximum pressure on London to exact favourable terms for Pakistan in the belief that the British people would go to any length to give him a mighty Pakistan. The DAWN, the mouth piece of the Muslim League wrote: “If Pakistan is to be real and strong, the creation of a corridor linking up to Eastern and Western areas is an indispensable adjunct. Be that as it may, we have no doubt, however, that if Muslims can win Pakistan-as indeed they have already won it-they can just as well build a corridor somewhere for the linking of the two segments of Pakistan.” This demand had an effect in England opposite to what Jinnah intended. Mountbatten became careful and armed himself with a letter from Churchill to Jinnah intimating to the latter that such a fantastic demand would, on the other hand, prevent the creation of Pakistan. Thereafter, nothing more was heard about it.
(Jinnah & Gandhi by S.K.Majumdar, pg 259)

2nd June Conference:

394

The historic conference was held on 2nd June 1947 at the Viceroy’s house. It was attended by seven leadersNehru, Patel and Kripalani on behalf of the Congress; and Jinnah, Liaqat Ali Khan and Abdul Rab Nashtar on behalf of the League, and Baldev Singh representing the Sikhs. Mountbatten handed over the copies of the statement of His Majesty’s Government to the leaders and asked them to place the same before their respective Working Committees and let him know their reaction by midnight. On the same day, Sir B.N.Rau, Gopalaswamy Aiyangar, Alladi Krishnaswami Ayyar and K.M.Munshi were called in by the Congress High Command to help it in considering the constitutional implications of the Indian Independence Bill. They joined Gandhiji, Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Patel, Rajendra Prasad, Kripalani and probably Maulana in the Cabinet room of the Government House. Jinnah and his advisers were in the next room, similarly invited. At short intervals, Mountbatten used to hop from one conference room to the other, helping in the solutions of doubts and removing difficulties raised by one group or the other. When they read the Independence Bill, they were shocked to find that Paramountcy was to lapse on the Bill being enacted by the British Parliament. The country would then have two Dominions and five hundred odd States, large and small, floating rudderless in the vacuum of power created by the British. The Congress leaders were equally unhappy about it. When Mountbtten came into the room, there was some talk of amending

395

this clause. However, he showed his helplessness; no change was possible in this matter. His majesty’s Government had to keep its word pledeged to the Indian Rulers-broken time and again in the past when British interests were at stake. Another point that they raised was that the Constituent constituent Constitution Assembly power, itself so should that it be invested amend the to with the British would

without

recourse

Parliament. This had been done in the case of the South African Constitution in 1909. Mountbatten appreciated the point and said he would take instructions from Whitehall. As he had kept the telephone to London open, he secured the consent of the British Government to incorporate the provision vesting full constituent powers in the Constituent Assembly, as suggested. This would complete the transfer of power from the British Parliament to the Constituent Assembly. Munshi later said: “Had the two groups not been thus brought together, the conferring of with each other Mountbatten, the through intermediation

Independence Act would have never been agreed to by the two parties so easily and in such a short time. Mountbatten’s speed and adroitness saved the country from a catastrohe.” Munshi further said: “If I remember aright, on the evening of the same day, thorough-going Lord Ismay, who was a marvel of efficiency, forwarded to both sides a scheme of partition, including the division of assets. Nobody had any time to give any second thought to the

396

assurances

which

had

already

been

given

to

Mountbatten.”
(Pilgrimage to Freedom: K.M.Munshi, pg 128-29)

On

3rd

June,

Mountbatten’s

conference

with

leaders was resumed. He told them that he has received written assurance from the Congress and the Sikhs and a verbal assurance from the Muslim League. The Viceroy turned to Jinnah, who nodded his head. The Viceroy said that the plan represented as complete an agreement as it was possible to get and that, in his judgment, what was being done was in the best interests of the people of India. The Viceroy communicated to the Secretary of State for India the assurances given to him by Nehru, Jinnah and Baldev Singh about the acceptance of the plan. Attlee announced the plan in the House of Commons on 3rd June. Hence it came to be known 3rd June Plan. Prime Minister Attlee, in his broadcast made that night said: “As the Indian leaders have finally failed to agree on the Cabinet Mission Plan for a united India, partition becomes the inevitable alternative.” He explained that the two-fold purpose of the plan was 1. To make possible the maximum degree of cooperation and harmony between the political parties in order that the partition, if decided upon, might involve as little loss and suffering orderly handing as and over possible; 2. To enable at to the the one British earliest or two Government to handover their responsibilities in an constitutional of power manner year opportunity. The plan, he added, provided for the that Governments, each having Dominion Status.

397

On the evening of 3rd June, the Viceroy Lord Mountbatten broadcast over All India Radio. He said: “Nothing I have seen or heard in the past few weeks has shaken my firm opinion that with a reasonable measure of goodwill between the communities a unified India would be by far the best solution of the problem. “ For more than a hundred years 400 millions of you have lived together and this country has been administered as a single entity. This has resulted in ubnified communications, defence, postal services and currency; an absence of tariffs and customs barriers; and the basis for an integrated political economy. My great hope was that communal differences would not destroy all this. “My first course, in all my discussions, was therefore to urge the political leaders to accept unreservedly the Cabinet Mission Plan of 16 May 1946. In my opinion, that plan provides the best arrangement that can be devised to meet the interests of all communities of India. To my great regret it has been impossible to obtain agreement either on the Cabinet Mission Plan, or on any other plan that would preserve the unity of India. But there can be no question of coercing any large areas, in which one community has a majority, to live against their will under a Government in which another community has a majority. And the only alternative to coercion is partition. “But when the Muslim League demanded the pasrtition certain of India, the my Congress mind used this the same is arguments for demanding in the events of the partition of provinces. To argument unassailable. In fact neither side proved willing to leave a

398

substantial area in which their community have a majority under the Government of the other. I am, of course, just as much opposed to the partition of provinces as I am to partition of India herself and for the same basic reasons. “For just as I feel there is an Indian consciousness which should transcend communal differences so I feel there is a Punjabi and Bengali consciousness which evoked a loyalty to their province. “And so I felt it was essential that the people of India themselves should decide this question of partition. “The procedure for enabling them to decide for themselves whether they want the British to hand over power to one or two Governments is set out in the statement which will be read to you. But there are one or two points on which I should like to add a note of explanation. “It was necessary in order to ascertain the will of the people of the Punjab, Bengal and part of Assam to play down boundaries between the Muslim majority areas and the remaining areas, but I want to make it clear that the ultimate boundaries will be settled by the Boundary Commission and will almost certainly not be identical with those which have been provisionally adopted. “We have given careful consideration to the position of the Sikhs. This valiant community forms about an eighth of the population of the Punjab, but they are so distributed that any partition of this province will inevitably divide them. All of us who have good of the Sikh community at heart are very sorry to think that the partition of the Punjab, which they themselves desire, cannot avoid splitting them to a greater or lesser extent.

399

The exact degree of the split will be left to the Boundary Commission on which they will of course be represented. “The whole plan may not be perfect; but like all plans, its success will depend on the spirit of goodwill with which it is carried out. I have always felt that once it was decided in what way to transfer power the transfer should take place at the earliest possible moment, but the dilemma was that if we waited until a constitutional set-up for all India was agreed, we should have to wait a long time, particularly if partition was decided on. Whereas if we handed over power before the Constituent Assemblies had finished their work we should leave the country without a constitution. The solution to this dilemma, which I put forward, is that His Majesty’s Government should transfer power now to one or two Governments of British India each having Dominion Status as soon as the necessary arrangements can be made. This I hope will be within the next few months. I am glad to announce that His Majesty’s Government have accepted this proposal and are already having legislation prepared for introduction in Parliament this session. As a result of these decisions the special function of the India Office will no longer have to be carried out, and some other machinery will be set up to conduct future relations between His Majesty’s Government and India. “I wish to emphasise that this legislation will not impose any restriction on the power of India as a whole, or of the two States if there is partition, to decide in the future their relationship to each other and to other member States of the British Commonwealth. “Thus the way is now open to an arrangement by which power can be transferred many months earlier

400

than the most optimistic of us thought possible, and at the same time leave it to the people of British India to decide for themselves on their future, which is the declared policy of His majesty’s Government. “If the transfer of power is to be effected in a peaceful and orderly manner, every single one of us must bend all his efforts to the task. This is no time for bickering, much less for the continuation in any shape or form of the disorders and lawlessness of the past few months. Do not forget what a narrow margin of food we are all working on. We cannot afford any toleration of violence. All of us are agreed upon.” The Viceroy concluded: “I have faith in the future of India and I am proud to be with you all at this momentous time. May your decisions be wisely guided and may they be carried out in the peaceful and friendly spirit of Gandhi-Jinnah appeal.” Immediately thereafter, His Majesty’s Government’s Statement was also broadcast and released to the press. Then followed broadcast by Nehru, Jinnah and Baldev Singh. Nehru in his broadcast said: “….It is with no joy in my heart that I commend these proposals to you though I have no doubt in my mind that this is the right course. For generations we have dreamt and struggled for a free and independent united India. The proposal to allow certain parts to secede if they so will is painful for any of us to contemplate. Nevertheless I am convinced that our present decision is the right one from the larger viewpoint. The united India that we have laboured for was not one of compulsion and coercion but a free and willing association of a free people. It may be that in this

401

way we shall reach that united India sooner than otherwise and that she will have a stronger and more secure foundation. “On this historic occasion each one of us must pray that he might be guided aright in the service of the motherland and of humanity at large. We stand on a watershed dividing the past from the future. Let us bury that past in so far as it is bad and forget all bitterness and recrimination. Let there be moderation in speech and writing. Let there be strength and perseverance in adhering to the cause and the ideals we have at heart. Let us face the future not with easy optimism or with any complacency or weakness but with conficdence and a firm faith in India. “On this the eve of great changes in India we have to make a fresh start with clear vision and firm mind, with steadfastness and tolerance and a stout heart. We should not wish ill to anyone but think always of every Indian as our brother and comrade. The good of the four hundred objective.” Paying homage to Mahatma Gandhi, Nehru said: “Inevitably on every occasion of crisis and difficulty we think of our great leader, Mahatma Gandhi, who has led us unfalteringly for over a generation through darkness and sorrow to the threshold of our freedom. To him we once again pay our homage. His blessings and wise counsel will happily be with us in the momentous years to come, as always.” Jinnah in his broadcastg said: “…We must examine the plan, its letter and spirit and come to our conclusions and take our decisions.” millions of India must be our supreme

402

“It is clear that the plan does not meet in some important respects our point of view; and we cannot say or feel that we are satisfied or that we agree with some of the matters dealt with by the plan. It is for us now to consider whther the plan as presented to us by His Majesty’s Government should be accepted by us as a compromise or settlement. On this point I do not wish to prejudge the decision of the Council according to our constitution, precedence and practice. But so far as I have been able to gather on the whole the reaction in the Muslim League circles in Delhi has been hopeful. Of course the plan has to be very carefully examined in its pros and cons before the final decision can be taken. “Now the plan that has been broadcast already makes it clear in paragraph 11 that a referendum will be made to the electorates of the present Legislative Assembly in the North-West Frontier Province who will choose which of the two alternatives in paragraph 4 they wish to accept; and the referendum will be held under the agies of the Governor-General in consultation with the Provincial Government. Hence it is clear that the verdict and the mandate of the people of the Frontier Province will be obtained as to whether they want to join the Pakistan Constituent Assemmbly or the Hindustan Constituent Assembly. In these circumstances, I request the Provincial Muslim League of the Frontier Province to withdraw the movement of peaceful civil disobedience which they had perforce to resort to; and I call upon all the leaders of the Muslim League and Musalmans generally to organize our people to face this referendum with hope and courage and I feel confident that the

403

people of the Frontier will give their verdict by a solid vote to join the Pakistan Constituent Assembly.” Sardar Patel wrote a letter to Lord Mountbetten on the same day i.e. 3rd June 1947 in which he said: “I am deeply distressed at the abuse by Mr. Jinnah of the hospitality extended to him by All India Radio and his breach of the rules of broadcast which, as you are aware, are almost as inviolable as the laws of nature. I had not seen the script before the broadcast but I noticed later that not only did he depart from the script but he has also committed a sacrilege by making a political, partisan and propagandist broadcast. Had I known it in time I would have certainly prevented him from turning All India Radio into a Muslim League platform by not only justifying a movement which has resulted in so much bloodshed and destruction of property but also by appealing to Frontier voters to vote according to League persuation.” Sardar further said: “I fully realize that you yourself did not expect, or had not sufficient notice to prevent it but I am really disappointed that he should have taken undue advantage of the courtesy and consideration extended to him by you, particularly on a solemn occasion when India and the whole world were watching us. I only hope that its consequences will not be equally mischievous and that he stood before the listeners self-condemned.”
(Sardar Patel’s Correspondence: Durga Das, Vol. 4, pg 125)

Lord Mountbatten addressed the Press Confernece on 4th June presided over by Sardar Patel. He declared: The date of the transfer of power is going to be much earlier, this year, somewhere round about by August. I

404

think the transfer could be about the 15th August. He appealed to the press to aim at one thing when putting out their news and their leading articles-peaceful, quick and speedy settlement, which all of them so sincerely desired. The Council of the All India Muslim League passed the following resolution at its meeting held on 9th June 1947 at Delhi: “The Council of the All India Muslim League after full deliberation and consideration of the statement of His Majesty’s Government dated 3rd June 1947 laying down the plan of transfer of power to the peoples of India, notes with satisfaction that the Cabinet Mission’s Plan of 16 May 1946 will not be proceeded with and has been abandoned. The only course open is the partition of India as now proposed in HMG’s statement of 3rd June. “The Council of the All India Muslim League is of the opinion that the only solution of India’s problem is to divide India into two-Pakistan and Hindustan. On that basis, the Council has given its most earnest attention and consideration to HMG’s statement. The Council is of the opinion that although it cannot agree to the partition of Bengal and the Punjab or give its consent to such partition, it has to consider HMG’s Plan for the transfer of power as a whole. The Council, therefore, hereby resolves to give full authority to the President of the All India Muslim League, Quaid-e-Azam M.A.Jinnah, to accept the fundamental principles of the Plan as a compromise and to leave it to him with full authority to work out all the details of the Plan in an equitable and just manner with regard to carrying out the complete division of India on the basis

405

and fundamental principles embodied in HMG’s Plan, including Defence, Finance, Communications. “The Council further empowers the President, Quaid-e-Azam M.A. Jinnah, to take all steps and decisions which may be necessary in connection with and relating to the Plan.” Sardar Patel wrote a letter to Mountbatten on 10th June 1947 in which he said: “You will notice that the resolution passed by the All India Muslim League Council is contradictory and there is studiedevasion of straightforward acceptance. At one place, it says it cannot agree to the partition og Bengal and the Punjab or give its consent to such partition. At the another place, it says it accepts the fundamental principles of the Plan of 3rd June as a compromise. You have to judge the resolution in the light of the speeches at he Council meeting. I have been able to obtain a copy of the proceedings through a source of the Intelligence Bureau. From these proceedings it is quite clear that the Pakistan of the statement of 3 rd June would merely be a springboard for action against Hindustan, and that there is no possibility of a settlement on this basis. The position is such as is bound to fill us with grave apprehension. “In these circumstances, unless Mr. Jinnah issues a clear statement accepting the Plan, there are bound to be difficulties at the AICC meeting.”
(Sardar Patel’s Correspondencr, Vol. 4, pg 147-48)

The All-India Congress Committee met on 14th June 1947 and passed a resolution accepting the 3rd June plan. While moving the resolution Govind Ballabh Pant said: “Acceptance of the 3rd June plan was the only

406

way to achieve freedom and liberty for the country… The choice today was between accepting the 3rd June plan or committing suicide.” In seconding the resolution, Azad disagreed with Pant that 3rd June plan was better than the Cabinet Mission Plan. He had all along held the view that the Statement of 16th May was the best solution of the problem. He added: “I told Jawaharlal that I could not possibly accept his views. I saw quite clearly that we were taking one wrong decision after another. Instead of retracting our steps, we are now going deeper in the morass. The Muslim League had accepted the Cabinet Mission Plan and a satisfactory solution of the Indian problem seemed in sight. Unfortunately, the position changed and Mr. Jinnah got a chance of withdrawing from the League’s earlier acceptance of the Plan. I warned Jawaharlal that history would never forgive us if we agreed to partition. The verdict would then be that India was divided as much by the Muslim League as by the Congress.” Azad further said: “It was impossible for me to tolerate this abject surrender on the part of the Congress. In my speech I said clearly that the decision, which the Congress Working Committee had reached was the result of a most unfortunate development. Partition was a tragedy for India….”
(Partition of India-Legend & Reality: H.M.Seervai, pg 125-126)

In

an

impassioned

speech,

Purushottamdas

Tandon said: “The decision of the Working Committee was an admission of weakness and that it arose out of a sense of dispair. Accepting the 3rd June Plan would benefit neither the Hindus nor the Muslims. The Hindus

407

in Pakistan would live in fear and the Muslims in India would do the same way.” Intervening the debate, Nehru said: “It was wrong to suggest that the Congress Working Committee had taken fright and therefore surrendered, though it was correct to say that they were very much disturbed at the prevailing madness.” Sardar Patel said: “Looking at the Cabinet Mission’s proposals in the light of his experience in the Interim Government during the past nine months, he was not at all sorry that the Statement of 16th May had gone. Had they accepted it, the whole of India would have gone the Pakistan way. Today, they have 70 to 80% of India, which they could develop and make strong according to their genius.” Acharya Kriplani, the Congress president answred the charge that the Working Committee had taken the decision out of fear. He said: “I must admit the truth of this charge, but not in the sense in which it is made. The fear is not for the lives lost, or of the widows’ wail, or the orphans’ cry, or of the many houses burnt. The fear is that if we go on like this, retaliating and heaping indignities on each other, we shall progressively reduce ourselves to a stage of cannibalism and worse. In every fresh communal fight, the most brutal and degraded acts of the previous fight became the norm.” Addressing the meeting Gandhi said: “I wish I had made some preparations for this meeting. Unfortunately, I could not. You will no doubt agree that no one could be as much hurt by the division of the country as I am. And I do not think that anyone can be as unhappy today as I am. But what has

408

happened has happened. You know my efforts in the building up of the Congress. Why was the Congress Working Committee was formed? When a Government has to be run, even if it is a Government of the people, a Cabinet of Munisters has to be appointed. Our Working Committee performs a similar function. It acts in your name. You have the power to keep it going or to dismiss it. The Working Committee has, on your behalf, accepted partition. Now we have to consider what our duty is. If you want to throw out the Resolution, you can do so. But you cannot make any changes in it. If the Congress Working Committwee has done this, it has done so deliberately and for certain weighty reasons. And this decision has been taken jointly by the Congress, the Muslim League and the British Government. The Working Committee does not approve of the scheme in its entirety. But even so, it has accepted it. The Cabinet Mission Plan had been devised by the British Government, but not this new plan. Both the Congress and the League have a share in its formulation. If you reject it, the world will call you irresponsible. You must, therefore, go along with those who have acted on your behalf. If you want to reject it, you must remember that what the country needs most today is peace. If you are sure that your rejection of the scheme will not lead to further breach of the peace and further disorders, you can do so. Whatever you decide to do, you must do after a great deal of deliberation. Gandhi further said: “So many things are happening today which bring to mind the English saying about swallowing a camel and straining at gnat. The decision that has been arrived at has been reached with your complicity, and yet you

409

complain

of

the

Working

Committee-the

Working

Committee, which has men of such great caliber on it. Those people had always said that the Congress would not accept Pakistan, and I was opposed to Pakistan even more. However, we may leave aside my position. The decision has not been mine to take, and the Working Committee has accepted it because there was no other way. They now see it clearly that the country is already divided into two camps. “But our constitution permits it, and your duty demands it, that if you feel that the Working committee is in the wrong, you should remove it, you should revolt and assume all power. You have a perfect right to do so, if you feel that you have the strength. But I do not find that strength in us today. If you had it, I would also be with you; and if I felt strong enough myself, I would alone take up the flag of revolt. But today I do not see the conditions for doing so.” Gandhi continued: “We have great problems to tackle and mere criticism cannot help in the solution of great problems. It is easy to criticize, but doing some work is not so easy. The Congress has to its credit some important achievements, but the Congress so far has not borne the responsibility of government. It has not even had a look at it. It was kept busy by work, which was even more important. Everything cannot be done at the same time. When now the responsibility of Government has devolved on us, we have gladly accepted it and we have detailed some of our best workers for the job. There, they have to grapple with some very intricate problems. They have to attend to the affairs of the millions of our countrymen.

410

“I criticize them, of course, but afterwards what? Shall I assume the burdens that they are carrying? Shall I become a Nehru or a Sardar or a Rajendra Prasad? Even if you should put me in their place, I do not know what I should be able to do. But I have not come here to plead for them. Who will listen to my pleading? But the President said that I should at least show my face here. Hence, I have come to show my face and to speak a few words.” Concluding his address Gandhi said: “It is most important that you should understand the times. The demand of the times is that we should bridle our tongues and do only what will be for India’s good. You will have seen from the newspapers what I have been doing these days. But you may also hear it from me. If through me something has been spoiled, then it is my duty to use all my power for putting it right. It is open to me whether to spoil it further or to mend it. I shall cite here the example of Rama. His father went mad and his mother became foolish, and Rama was exiled. The people of Ayodhya were grieved, but it all led to something glorious coming out at the end. I do not consider the Ramayana as history, but the lesson that is to be drawn from it is of daily use. It would be wrong to believe that Ravana had ten heads. But there was a Ravana that was adharma. It was this Ravana that Rama killed during his exile and saved dharma. “This is what we have to do today. We have to draw something good out of this bad thing. I am not the one to be upset by defeat. From my childhood up, I have spent my life fighting and my struggle has been to extract good from evil. If there is gold in mud, even if there is a

411

lot of the mud and very little gold, it should not be thrown away. We should draw out gold and diamonds even from mud.”
(The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi: Vol. LXXXVIII, pg. 153)

The resolution was carried by 157 votes to 29 votes, 32 members remaining neutral. Thus the 3rd June Plan was accepted and India was partitioned to the triumph of Jinnah and to the satisfaction of Jawaharlal Nehru, who was impatient to wear the crown and for which he even agreed for transfer of power on 15th August, which was according to the noted astrologers, including Swami Madamanand of Calcutta most inauspicious. Further in his impatience, Nehru handed over an envelop to Mountbatten said to be the names of persons to be sworn in as Ministers. When Mountbatten opened the envelop, to his surprise, he found that the envelop was empty. When Mountbatten brought it to the notice of Nehru the latter said: “You and I have been through this so often, it does not matter. You and I have agreed who is going to be.”
(Mounbatten and the Partition of India: Larry Collins & Dominique Lapierre, pg 110)

Although Jawaharlal Nehru did not believe in religious rituals, he sat at the Yajna on 15th August 1947, performed by the Brahmins of Benaras to celebrate the event of a Brahmnin becoming the first Prime Minister of free and independent India and wore the Raja Danda given to him by these Brahmins and drank the water of the Ganges brought by them.
(Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar’s Writings & Speeches, Vol. 1, p, 149)

412

*******

413

JINNAH -THE REPENTANT
Jinnah left Delhi for Karachi on 7th August 1947 to take over as the first Governor General of Pakistan. His parting message to the Muslims of India was: “Now the country was divided, they should be loyal citizens of India.” On arrival in Karachi, While walking up the steps of the Government House, Jinnah told Navel Lieutentant S.M.Ahsan: “Do you know, I never expected Pakistan in my life time.” The first meeting of the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan was held on 11th August 1947. Jinnah was unanimously elected as its President. Mohammed Ayub Khuhro, who filed one of the seven nomination papers for Quid-e-Azam as President of the Constituent Assembly said: “The Lahore Resolution of 1940, which many at the time had considered a dream but now seven years later without any bloody war and without any serious sacrifice Pakistan had been achieved.”
(Mohammed Ayub Khuhro-A life of courage in Politics by Hamida Khuhuro, pg 315)

In his presidential address, which was extempore, Jinnah said: “…I know, there are people who do not quite agree with the division of India and the partition of the Punjab and Bengal. Much has been said against it, but now that it has been accepted, it is the duty of every one of us to loyally abide by it and honorably act according to the agreement, which is now final and binding on all… But the question is whether it was practicable or possible to act otherwise than what has been done. A division had to take place. On both sides, in Hindustan and Pakistan, there are sections of people who may not agree with it,

414

who may not like it, but in my judgment there was no other solution and I am sure that future history will record its verdict in favour of it. And what is more it will be proved by actual experience as we go on that that was the only solution. Any idea of United India could never have worked and in my judgment it would have led us to terrific disaster. May be that view is correct; may be it is not; that remains to be seen. What shall we do now? If we want to make this great State of Pakistan happy and prosperous, we should wholly and solely concentrate on the well-being of the people, and especially of the masses and the poor. If you will work in cooperation, forgetting the past, burying the hatchet, you are bound to succeed. If you change your past and work together in a spirit that every one of you, no matter to what community he belongs, no matter what relations he had with you in the past, no matter what is his colour, caste or creed, is first, second and last a citizen of this State with equal rights, privileges and obligations, there will be no end to the progress you will make. We should begin to work in that spirit and in course of time all these angularities of the majority and minority communities, the Hindu community and the Muslim community-because even as regards Muslims you have Pathans, Punjabis, Sunnis, and so on and among the Hindus you have Brahmins, Vaishnavs, Khatris, also Bengalis, Madrasis and so onwill vanish. Indeed, if you ask me this has been the biggest hindrance in the way of India to attain freedom and indpendence and but for this we would have been free people long long ago.” Jinnah further said: “You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or

415

to any other place of worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed, that has nothing to do with the business of the State. We are starting in the days when there is no discrimination, no distinction between one community and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one State. The people of England in course of time had to face the realities of the situation and had to discharge the responsibilities and burdens placed upon them by the Government. Today, you might say that Roman Catholics and Protestants do not exist; what exist now is that every man is citizen, an equal citizen of Great Britain. All members of the nation.” Jinnah continued: “ If you keep this ideal before you then you will find that in course of time Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in a religious sense, because that is the personal faith of each individual, but in the political sense as citizens of State…” Concluding his address Jinnah said: “I shall always be guided by the principles of justice and fair play; without any prejudice, or ill-will; partiality or favouratism. My guiding principle will be justice and complete impartiality, and I am sure that with your support and cooperation, I can look forward to Pakistan becoming one of the greatest Nations of the world.” Jinnah, in his address made it clear that in Pakistan (a) There would be religious freedom i.e. freedom of religious belief, profession and practice, (b) There would be no discrimination on the grounds of religion, caste or creed and (c) All citizens will be equal, irrespective of their personal religion or faith.

416

Jinnah, earlier in his interview to the Reuters Correspondent, Doon Campbell in 1946 had said: “The new State of Pakistan would be a modern democratic State with sovereignty resting in the people and members of the new nation having equal rights of citizenship regardless of their religion, caste or creed.” Again at a press conference on 14th July 1947, Jinnah said: “The minorities in Pakistan will enjoy freedom of religion; their religion will be secure and there would be no interference with freedom of worship. Secondly, the members of minority communities would be citizens of Pakistan in all respects.” Jinnah’s address prima facie makes one believe that he had abandoned the two-nation theory and that he wanted Pakistan to be a Secular State. Jinnah’s address, however, became the subject matter of debate-how a person who on the basis of twonation theory and on the plea that the Hindus and Muslims cannot live together in one country brought Pakistan into existence could abandon the two-nation theory and proclaim that Pakistan would be a Secular State. Sharif-al-Mujahid in his book, “Quid-e-Azam Jinnah” says: “That assurance such as equal citizenship of Pakistan for all without discrimination between followers of various creeds, and Hindus and Muslims ceasing to be Hindus and Muslims in the political sense as citizens of the State clash with the classical concept of Islamic polity which does not accord to the Dhimmis (Peoples of the Book, like Jews and Christians), the same political rights and privileges as enjoyed by the Muslims.” Sharif-al-Mujahid further says: “It must be remembered

417

that in all of Jinnah’s numerous pronouncements during his stewardship of Pakistan, this was the solitary instance of its kind. Mujahid calls it a somewhat squinting statement. However, Mujahid later suggested that the assurance to minorities in Jinnah’s address to the Constituent Assembly became necessary because of the chaotic political climate in the entire sub-continent and the raging, tearing civil war in progress which had unnerved the minorities in both the dominions.. Istiaq Ahmad in his book, “The Concept of an Islamic State,” writes: “Jinnah’s speech contradicted the whole rationale of Pakistan. Muslim nationalism was based on relgion and Jinnah and all other Muslim League leaders had used Islam to legitimize their demand for a separate State. Therefore, Jinnah’s discourse on a Secular State was hardly consistent with the logic of Pakistan.” The DAWN, the mouthpiece of the Muslim League in its editorial, “Perverse Propaganda,” wrote on 26th August 1947: “When Jinnah declared that in course of time, Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims not in the religious sense, but in a political sense, he merely meant that a Hindu or any other person not professing the Muslim faith will not be debarred from participating in the administration of Pakistan, nor will he be discriminated against by its laws, nor will he suffer economically.” During the debate in the Constituent Assembly, Dr. Mahmud Hussain, Deputy Minister distinguished between common nationality as a legal concept, and nation as a sociological concept; the Hindus and Muslims of Pakistan, he maintained, are not one nation though

418

they are citizens of the same State. He emphasized that Pakistan exists only on that basis-Muslims are a separate nation and on no other basis. Khalid B. Sayeed says: “The Quid-e-Azam, who advocated the two nation theory as the raison d’etre for the creation of Pakistan, probably felt after the establishment of the State that he could calm religious passions so that communal carnage and killings might be brought under control.” Justice Mohammad Munir after examining the address of Jinnah came to the conclusion that Jinnah was opposed to theocratic Government. He wanted a secular democratic Government; that Pakistan nationality would not be based on an individual’s creed, religion and sect. Earlier Jinnah had described the question whether Pakistan would be a secular or theocratic State as absurd. He had said: “I do not know what theocratic State means. …Muslims learned democracy 1300 years ago. Jinnah also probably felt that the hostage doctrine could not provide protection to the Muslims of India. In 1948, in Dacca, Jinnah categorically assured a fair deal to the minorities. While talking to the leader of the opposition in the Constituent Assembly, Jinnah said: “You will tell these two things to your people; i. Not to be afraid and ii. Not to leave Pakistan, because Pakistan will be a democratic State and the Hindus will have the same rights as the Muslims.” In his public meeting in Dacca on 21st March 1948, Jinnah reiterated: “We shall treat the minorities in Pakistan fairly and justly. Their lives and properties in Pakistan are far more secure and protected than in India.

419

We shall maintain peace, law and order, and protect and safe guard fully every citizen of Pakistan without On a visit to the riot affected spot, Jinnah said that Hindus are citizens of Pakistan and ordered the police to use force to protect them. He further said: “I would rather be protector General of the Hindu minority than Governor-General of Pakistan. When Iskander Mirza asked Jinnah whether he wanted to make Pakistan an Islamic State, Jinnah replied: “Nonsense, I want a modern State.” Jinnah’s statements in the Constituent Asembly raised storms of indignation even among his close followers that he had to propiciate them by offering “Namaz” publicly, which he had hardly done through out his political career. Many parts of his speeches were not published by most of the newspapers in Pakistan. He became the target of both the paper propaganda and physical attack. Within a week of the creation of Pakistan, some Muslim refugees carrying a lethal weapon entered into the Government House. They wanted to kill him, but were overpowered. Different political factions opposing him also instigated the refugees to hold demonstrations against him. This happened in Lahore on 11th September 1947. A violent mob took out the effigy of Jinnah and raised slogans, “Down with Jinnah.” Again in Lahore on 25th September, another demonstration was held against him. There were at least four attempts on Jinnah’s life. Jinnah’s deteriorated relations Dr. with his closest Ayub collegues Khuhru rapidly. Mohamed distinction of caste, creed or community.”

blatently defied Jinnah and refused to call him Quid-eAzam. At a private and exclusive lunch at the Nawab of

420

Bhawalpur’s house, Jinnah called Liaqat Ali, a mediocre. Liaqat Ali offered to resign as Prime Minister after learning Jinnah’s dissatisfaction with his work. Jinnah expressed equal frustration and disgust at the way Nawab of Mamdot handled the problems of refugees. Jinnah told Lieutanent Col. Dr. Illahi Baksh on 29th August 1948: “You know, when you first came to Ziarat, I wanted to live. Now, however, it does not matter whether I live or not. Dr. Baksh noticed tears in Jinnah’s eyes and was startled by this manifestation of feeling in one generally looked upon as unemotional and unbending. Baksh said: “I had always felt that Jinnah had been kept going, despite his low vitality, by an indomitable will. I knew from experience that when a patient gave up the fight no treatment, however, perfect could achieve much, and was therefore, greatly distressed to find that the man of iron will had given up the fight.” Jinnah lived on a few cups of tea and coffee, and some plain water to swallow his pills. He lay in bed quietly, apathetic and depressed. He told his sister Fatima: “I am no longer interested in living. The sooner I go the better.” And he breathed his last on 11th September 1948 at 10.20 p.m. The Muslim fanatics who used to condemn Jinnah as “Kafir (Infidel) felt relieved. Maulana Maudoodi, the leader of Jamat-e-Islami refused to lead “Namaz-eJanaza” (Funeral Prayer). Instead, he held a thanksgiving prayer and celebrated the death of Jinnah as a day of rejoicing.
(Gandhi Marg: April-June 2005, pg 15)

This was the irony of fate of the man, who for his ego satisfaction created Pakistan.

421

On Jinnah’s death, “The Statesman” wrote: “On 11
th

September 1948, departed from the field of his

mundane activities, a great Indian, who had helped to disrupt the unity and integrity of his father land.” Jinnah Wanted to Return to India: Jinnah wanted to come back to India. He is reported to have said in a meeting of the Muslim League in Karachi: “…I still consider my self to be an Indian. For the moment I accepted the Governor-Generalship of Pakistan. But I am looking forward to the time, when I would return to India and take my place as a citizen of my country.” Jinnah is reported to have defended his own migration from India saying: “I would have gladly stayed behind in India, if I had the confidence that a satisfactory alternative was available to the new State. The above statements of Jinnah show that his heart was not in the Government House of Karachi, but in the Malabar Hill of Bombay. When Sri Prakasa told that the Indian Government was seeking requisition of his house in Bombay, Jinnah was taken aback and almost pleadingly said to Sri Prakasa: “Do not break my heart. Tell Jawaharlal Nehru not to break my heart. I have built it brick by brick. Who can live in a house like that.” He further said: “You do not know how I love Bombay. I still look forward to going back there.” Sri Prakasa asked Jinnah: “Do you really desire to go back to Bombay? May I tell the Prime Minister that you are wanting to be back in Bomaby? Jinnah replied: “Yes, you may.” It may be recollected that Jinnah had told the Muslim League Council in Delhi immediately after partition was accepted:

422

“I have won Pakistan for you; now do what you can with it.” Jinnah told Liaqat Ali Khan, as reported by “Frontier Post,” published from Peshawar on 23rd January 1948: “I have committed the biggest blunder of my life. If now, I get the opportunity, I would go to Delhi and tell Jawaharlal Nehru to forget about the follies of the past and become friends.” Victory and Defeat of Jinnah: Victory: Creation of Pakistan was a significant achievement of Jinnah. He converted his dream rather ego satisfaction in reality that too in his life time, which he had not expected as told to S.M. Ahesan while entering his Government House in Karachi. Jinnah took pride in saying that he created Pakistan with the help of his stenographer and his typewriter. And this in a way was true. It was a unique unprecedented example in the world history that an individual, almost single-handedly established a Sovereign State. He created history and also altered the geography. But at the cost of the lives of ten lakh people and displacement of 20 crore and 20 lakh people. Penderal Moon said: “To have transferred in little more than seven years the chimerical idea of Pakistan into a living political reality was an astounding achievement.” Carl Posey says: “By sheer force of will, Jinnah sundered the grand ruby that had been British India and raised Pakistan from shards.” According to Stanley Wolpert, Jinnah made three unique contributions: i. He significantly altered the

423

course of history. ii. He modified the map of the world and iii. He created a nation-state. Defeat: Jinnah admitted that he committed the biggest blunder of his life in creating Pakistan and wanted to come back to India. He also said that he still considers himself to be an Indian and looking forward to a time when he would return to India and take his place as a citizen of India. He requested Sri Prakasa to convey to Jawaharlal Nehru not to requisition his house in Bombay, because he wanted to come back to stay in that house, which he built brick by brick. About his migration to Pakistan Jinnah said: “I would have gladly stayed behind in Inida, if I had the confidence that a satisfactory alternative was available to the new State.” The million-dollar question arises, if all this was in his heart in heart, why did he convert himself from an Ambassador of Hindu Muslim Unity to the Creator of Pakistan. The reply according to me is, it was only for psychological satisfaction to show that, he was more than a match to Gandhi, Nehru, Patel and Azad all put together, because they had hurt his ego in one way or the other and did not give him recognition as he expected. But what was the price he had ultimately to pay? Mohamed Ayub Khuhru declined to address him Quid-eAzam. Instead he was called, Kafir-e-Azam. Maulana Maudoodi refused to lead “Namaz-e-Janaza” for him. This was Jinnah’s defeat.

********

424

WAS JINNAH ALONE RESPONSIBLE FOR PARTITION
My emphatic reply is “NO.” With British, Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Patel were equally responsible for creating a feeling of separation in Jinnah’s mind and subsequently they kept on strengthening it by their utterances. I reproduce below the statements made by these leaders. I begin with Mahatma Gandhi. Mahatma Gandhi’s Role: In April 1940 after the Lahore Resolution, Gandhi wrote in “Harijan”: “I know no non-violent method of compelling the obedience of eight crore Muslims to the will of the rest of India. The Muslims must have the same right to self-determination that the rest of India has. We are at present a joint family. Any member may claim a division.” Speaking on the Cripps proposals on 13th April 1942, Gandhi said: “…If the vast majority of Muslims regard themselves as a separate nation having nothing common with the Hindus and others, no power on earth can compel them to think otherwise. And if they want to partition India on that basis, they must have the partition, unless the Hindus want to fight against such a division.” Gandhi further said: “If the Muslims wanted anything–no matter what it is-no power on earth can prevent them from having it.” On 24th September 1944, Gandhi wrote to Jinnah that he was prepared to recommend to the Congress and

425

the country to accept the claim for separation contained in the Muslim League Resolution of 1940 at Lahore, if Muslims desired to live in separation from the rest of India. Diwan Chaman Lal wanted Gandhi and Jinnah to meet to settle the issue of Hindu-Muslim unity amicably. He made the proposal to Gandhi, who replied that adversity makes strange bedfellows. Chaman Lal then went to Jinnah and asked him, May I tell Gandhi that you wish to see him? Jinnah answered “No”. I am willing to see him, if he wishes; but I am not willing that you should say that I wish to see him. Diwan Chaman Lal went back to Gandhi and asked, do you wish to see Jinnah? Gandhi’s reply was, “If Jinnah wishes to meet me, I will walk on bare feet from here to Cecil Hotel.” Chaman Lal says, “Gandhi and Jinnah did not overcome the human weaknesses and the hope of amity was lost.” Gandhi told the Cabinet Mission: “I had never been able to appreciate the Pakistan, which Mr. Jinnah says he means. His Pakistan was a sin which he would not commit.” Gandhi further said: “In my view, the two nation theory was most dangerous. I oppose the two-nation theory or two-constitution making bodies.” Gandhi suggested to the Cabinet Mission to ask Jinnah to form the first Government. If Jinnah refused then the offer to form the Government should be made to the Congress. Two American journalists asked Gandhi: “What does a free India mean, if, as Mr. Jinnah said, Muslims will not accept the Hindu rule? Gandhi replied: “I have not asked the British to handover India to the Congress or the Hindus. Let them entrust India to God or to

426

anarchy. Then all the parties will fight one another as dogs, or will, when real responsibility faces them, come to a reasonable agreement. I shall expect non-violence to arise out of chaos.” Gandhi, in his brief address to the Congress Working Committee on 25th June 1946 said: “You are not bound to act upon my unsupported suspicion. You should follow my intuition if it appeals to your reason. Otherwise, you should take an independent course. I shall now leave with your permission. You should follow the dictates of your reason.” And Gandhi quietly left. On the same day at noon, the Cabinet Mission invited the members of the Congress Working Committee to meet them. Gandhi not being a member was not sent for and did not go. On their return nobody told Gandhi a word about what happened at the meeting. On 31st March 1947, Gandhi declared: “If the Congress wishes to accept Partition, it will be over my dead body. So long as I am alive I will never agree to the partition of India. Nor will I allow Congress to accept it.” On 1st April 1947 Gandhi said: “…My writ runs no more. If it did, the tragedies in the Punjab, Bihar and Noakhali would not have happened. No one listens to me any more. I am a small man. True, there was a time when mine was a big voice. Then everybody obeyed what I said; now neither the Congress nor the Hindus nor the Muslims listen to me. I am crying in wilderness. Today everyone can forsake me, but God will not. He has His devotee tested. An English poem by Francis Thompson describes God as the “Hound of Heaven.” He is the retriever of Dharma. It would be enough if He hears me.

427

On 1st June 1947, Gandhi woke up earlier than usual. As there was still half an hour before prayer, he remained lying in bed and began to muse in a low voice: “The purity of my striving will be put to the test only now. Today, I find myself all alone. Even the Sardar and Jawaharlal think that my reading of situation is wrong and peace is sure to return if Partition is agreed upon. They did not like my telling the Viceroy that even if there was to be Partition, it should not be through British intervention or under the British rule. They wonder if I have not deteriorated with age…Nevertheless, I must speak as I feel, if I am to prove a true and loyal friend to the Congress and to the British people, as I claim to be regardless of whether my advice is appreciated or not. I see clearly that we are setting about this business the wrong way. We may not feel the full effect immediately, but I can see clearly that future of independence gained at this price is going to be dark. I pray that God may not keep me alive to witness it. In order that He may give me the strength and wisdom to remain firm, in the midst of universal opposition, and to utter the full truth, I need all the strength that purity can give.” He continued: “But, somehow, in spite of my being all alone in my thought, I am experiencing an ineffable inner joy and freshness of mind. I feel as if God Himself is lighting my path before me. And that is perhaps the reason why I am able to fight on single-handed. People ask me to retire to Kashi or to the Himalayas. I laugh and tell them that the Himalayas of my penance are where there is misery to be alleviated, oppression to be relieved. There can be no rest for me so long as there is a single person in India lacking

428

the necessaries of life…I cannot bear to see Badsha Khan’s grief. His inner agony wrings my heart. But, if I gave way to tears, it would be cowardly and, the stalwart Pathan as he is, he would break down. So, I go about my business unmoved. That is no small thing.” “But may be,” he added after a pause, “all of them are right and I alone am floundering in darkness.” With a final effort Gandhi concluded: “I shall perhaps not be alive to witness it, but should the evil I apprehend overtake India and her independence be imperiled, let posterity know what agony this old soul went through thinking of it. Let it not be said that Gandhi was party to India’s vivisection. But everybody today is impatient for independence. Therefore, there is no other help.” Using a well-known Gujarati metaphor, he likened independence-cum-partition to a “wooden loaf.” If they (the Congress leaders) eat it, they die of colic; if they leave it, they starve.” (Mahatma Gandhi: The Last Phase-II, p 215) Speaking on 4th June 1947 on the 3rd June 1947 plan, Gandhi explained that the Congress had to yield to the force of circumstances. He also explained the reasons, which led the Congress leaders to accept the partition. They all disliked the vivisection of India, but they could not let India bleed continuously. A surgical operation was to be performed under the circumstances.” On the same day Gandhi said: “You (Hindus) do not listen to me. The Muslims have given me up. How can I fully convince the Congress of my point of view.” Some people asked him whether he would undertake a fast unto death in view of the decision of the Congress Working Committee accepting division of India.

429

Had not he called Pakistan a sin in which he could never participate? Replying to this, Gandhi said on 5th June that he could not fast at the dictation of anyone. Such fasts could not be lightly ubdertaken. They could conceivably be wholly undesirable. The fasts could not be undertaken out of anger. Anger was a short madness. He must, therefore, undertake the fast only when the still small voice within him called for it. He was servant of the country and, therefore, of the Congress. Was he to fast because the congress differed from his views? He had to be patient. A woman correspondent wrote to Gandhi that he should retire to jungle. It was he who spoilt Jinnah and turned his head. He was responsible for the evil country was facing. Gandhi’s reply was that she was quite wrong. Love or ahimsa was the most powerful magnet in the world. It never did any harm to anyone. Gandhi wrote to Nehru on 7th June: “...The oftener we meet the more convinced I am that the gulf between us is deeper than I had feared…I had told the Badsha Khan that if I do not carry you with me, I shall retire at least from the Frontier consultation and let you guide him. I will not and cannot interpose myself between you and him.” Referring to the newspaper report that he had differed from the decision of the Working Committee and that the AICC would raise its voice against it, Gandhi observed on 7th June that the AICC had appointed the Working Committee and they could not lightly discard its decisions. Supposing the Working Committee signed a promissory note on behalf of the AICC, the AICC had to honour it. The Working Committee might make a

430

mistake. The AICC could punish it by removing it. But they could not go back upon the decision already taken by it. A press correspondent reminded Gandhi that he had earlier proclaimed that the vivisection of India would mean vivisection of himself. On 9th June 1947, in his reply Gandhi stated that when he made the statement against vivisection, he was voicing the public opinion. But when the public opinion was against him, was he to coerce it? Gandhi further said: “If only non-Muslim India was with him, he could show the way to undo the proposed partition. But then he admitted that he had become or was rather considered a back number.” In the course of his post-prayer speech on 12th June 1947, Gandhi said: “The division of India was now a certainty, so far as man could see. I ask you not to grieve over it. I have never believed in Quaid-e-Azam Jinnah’s two-nation theory and never would. Change of religion could never change nationality. I am as much of Pakistan, as of Hindustan. If we act in the like manner, Jinnah Saheb would not be able to prove his theory in spite of the geographical division of India.” Gandhi further said: “Does the re-adjustment of geography of India mean two nations? I admit that the division having been agreed upon, unity becomes somewhat difficult. But assuming that the Muslims of India look upon themselves as a nation distinct from the rest, they cannot become so, if the non-Muslims do not respond. The Muslim majority areas may call themselves Pakistan, but the rest, and the largest part of India, need not call itself Hindustan. In contradiction to Pakistan, it

431

will mean the abode of the Hindus. Do the Hindus feel so? Have the Parsis, Christians and the Jews born in India and the Anglo-Indians, who do not happen to have white skin, any other home than India? I will omit the Muslims for the time being… History has shown that possession of proud names does not make the possessors great. Men and groups are known not by what they call themselves, but by their deeds.”
(Mahatma: D.G.Tendulkar, pg 5-12)

Addressing the All India Congress Committee meeting on 14, 15 June, Gandhi said: “…If at this stage, the All India Congress Committee rejected the Congress Working Committee’s decision, the consequences would be the finding of a new set of leaders, who would not only be capable of constituting the Congress Working Committee, but of taking charge of the Government. They should not forget that peace in the country was very essential at this juncture.” He further said: “He was one of those who steadfastedly opposed the division of India. Yet he has come before the All India Congress Committee to urge the acceptance of the resolution on India’s division. Some times certain decisions, however, unpalatable they might be, had to be taken.” Mr. N.K. Bose, asked Gandhi in August 1947, why did he cease to oppose partition? Gandhi replied: “With whom was I going to carry on fight? Don’t you realize that as a result of one year of communal riots, the people of India have all become communal? They can see nothing beyond communal question. They are tired and frightened. The Congress has only represented this feeling of the whole nation. How can I then oppose?

432

I strongly feel that Gandhi should have remained firm on his stand and statements. It was a settled fact that the Congress was bent on passing a resolution to vivisect India with or without the consent of Gandhi. Gandhi should have opposed the resolution or at least remained neutral. In that case his conscious would have been clear and the world would have known that Gandhi was not a party to the decision of the Congress to partition India. Jawaharlal Nehru during his imprisonment in 1942 wrote in his diary: “Gandhi has great qualities in him. But he was a weak leader, there was no consistency in his policy. In last three four years, he changed his stand many times.” India. Gandhi, however, justified his inconsistencies by saying: “In my search after truth, I have discarded many ideas and learnt many new things. Old as I am in age, I have no feeling that I have ceased to grow inwardly or that my growth will stop at the dissolution of the flesh. What I am concerned with is my readiness to obey the call of truth, my God, from moment to moment, and, therefore, when anybody finds inconsistency between any two writings of mine, if he has still faith in my sanity, he would do well to choose the later of the two on the same subject.” It is difficult for me to say that Gandhi changed his mind on the issue of partion to obey the call of truth. The historians and psychologists, probably, will have to undertake further research to find out as to why Gandhi And this was proved by the statements made by Gandhi on the issue of partition of

433

ultimately advised the All India Congress Committee to accept partition of India? It may be recollected that as soon as Gandhi captured the Congress, he did two things to populrise it. The first thing he did was to introduce Civil Disobedience. The second thing he did was to introduce the principle of Linguistic Provinces. In the constitution that was framed by the Congress under his inspiration and guidance, India was to be divided into the following provinces with the language and headquarter as mentioned below against them: Province Ajmere-Mewara Andhra Assam Bihar Bengal Bombay (City) Delhi Gujarat Karnatak Kerala Mahakoshal Maharashtra Nagpur N.W.F.P. Punjab Sind Tamil Nadu United Provinces Utkal Vidharbha (Berar) Headquarter Ajmer Madras Gauhati Patna Calcutta Bombay Delhi Ahmedabad Dharwar Calicut Jubbalpur Poona Nagpur Peshawar Lahore Karachi Madras Lucknow Cuttack Akola Language Hindustani Telgu Assamese Hindustani Bengali Marathi-Gujrati Hindustani Gujarati Kannada Malayalam Hindustani Marathi Marathi Pustu Punjabi Sindhi Tamil Hindustani Oriya Marathi

In this distribution no attention was paid to considerations of area, population or revenue. The thought that every administrative unit must be capable of supporting and supplying a minimum standard of

434

civilized life, for which it must have sufficient area, sufficient population and sufficient revenue, had no place in this scheme of distribution of areas for provincial purposes. The determining factor was only language. No thought was given to the possibility that it might introduce a disruptive force in the already loose structure of the Indian social life.
(Pakistan or Partition of India by Dr. B.R.Ambedkar, pg 27)

In fact the seed for formation of the Linguistic States are seen in the above decision. Had the proposals of Sir Mohamed Iqbal, Rehmat Ali and other Muslim leaders were accepted at the appropriate time, the partition of India could have been avoided. Alas, it was not accepted. Jawaharlal Nehru’s Role: Jawaharlal described the departure of Jinnah from the Congress session at Nagpur in 1920 as follows: “…The disapproved by developments Jinnah. He in the on Congresspolitical noncooperation and the new constitution-were thoroughly disagreed grounds. Temperamentally, he did not fit in at all with the new Congress. He felt completely out of his element in the Khadi-clad crowed. The enthusiasm of the people stuck him as mob-hysteria. On the thumping success of the Congress in 1937 election, Jawaharlal Nehru declared that in the political evolution of the country, there are only two parties namely the British and the Congress that counted. Jinnah shot back: “There is a third party in the country and that is the Muslim League whom the Congress will ignore at its own risk and peril.”

435

A few days later Nehru asked: “who are the Muslims? Apparently, those who follow Jinnah and the Muslim League. What does the Muslim League stand for? Does it stand for the independence of India? I (Nehru) believe not. It represents a group of persons having no contacts with the Muslim masses and a few even with the lower middle classes. May I suggest to Mr. Jinnah that I come into greater touch with the Muslim masses than most of the members of the Muslim League.” Maulana Abul Kalam Azad said: “If the U.P. League’s offer of cooperation had been accepted, the Muslim League would have merged in the Congress. Nehru’s action gave the Muslim League in U.P. a new lease of life. Jinnah took full advantage of the situation and started an offensive, which ultimately led to Pakistan.” According to Prof M. Mujeeb, Nehru’s refusal to make an alliance with the Muslim League drove the Muslims as a class to feel that it was fighting for its life. If Khliquzaman had been made a minister, the League in U.P. would most probably have dissolved. Prof. B. Sheik Ali said: “The failure of Nehru to accommodate the League was the first seed of Pakistan. Again exclusion of the League from the Congress ministries after the election of 1937 was the last straw on the Camel’s back that swept off the concept of United India.” Stanley Wolpert says: “It would not be last of Nehru’s political errors of judgment in his dealings with Jinnah, but it was one of the fatal mistakes he ever made in a moment of hubris. More than Iqbal, it was Nehru, who charted a new mass strategy for the League,

436

prodding and challenging Jinnah to leave the drawing rooms of politics to reach down to the hundred million Muslims who spent most of each day labouring in rural fields.” Wolpert further says: “Nehru had taunted Jinnah in the Legislative Assembly. And for Jinnah this was as significant a turning point, traumatically triggered by public humiliation, as the Congress non-cooperation resolution rebuke he had sustained at Nagpur in 1920” Maulana Hasrat Mohani, while moving a resolution for full independence at 1937 session of the Muslim League at Lucknow remarked: “Those who believed that Jawaharlal Nehru was above communalism or that he was the man who would solve the communal problem by bringing lasting amity and unity between the Hindus and the Muslims, were living in fools’ paradise.” Penderal Moon described the Congress failure to cooperate with the League as the prime cause of the creation of Pakistan. In the opinion of Frank Moraes: “Jinnah certainly created Pakistan. But the Congress by its sins of commission and omission also helped to make it possible. The Congress spurned Muslim League’s overtures for a coalition. The result was not to drive the League into political wilderness but to strengthen Jinnah’s hands as the foremost champion of Muslim claims and rights.” Nehru described the League session of 1937 at Lucknow as the last ditch of the political reaction. To this, Jinnah replied: “What happened to Nehru’s mass contact program? What was it for? It was to get hold of men who will be their creatures, who will sign their program and sing Bande Mataram.” Jinnah further said: “Nehru talks of hunger and poverty, goes about threatening Zamindars

437

with complete extinction and brings the large peasants under his influence. The Hindu industrial magnets, merchants, princess, money lenders-the real blood suckers of millions of poor men, receive his blessings, for they feed the Congress organization.” On 25th February 1938, Nehru wrote to Jinnah: “… I do not yet know what the fundamental points of disputes are?” Jinnah replied: “I am only amazed at your ignorance. This matter has been tackled since 1925 right upto 1935 by most prominent leaders in the country. I would beg of you to study it and not take a self complacent attitude.” On 6th April 1938, Nehru wrote in the name of Congress: “…Obviously, the Muslim League is an important communal organization. But the importance does not come from outside recognition but from inherent strength.” Jinnah sent a reply to this, in which he said: “It seems to me that you cannot even accurately understand my letter. Your tone and language again display the same arrogance and militant spirit as if the Congress is the sovereign power. Having regard to your mentality, it is really difficult for me to make you understand the position any further.” In an interview later, Jinnah remarked of Nehru: “He seems to carry the responsibility of the whole world on his shoulders and must poke nose into everything except minding his own business.” Linlithgow wrote to Zetland: “It is a tragedy in many ways that at a time such as this we should have in so important a position a doctrinaire like Nehru with his amateur knowledge of foreign politics and of the international stage.”

438

Nehru wrote about League’s Lahore Resolution of 1940 as Jinnah’s fantastic proposals, reading it as a Cat’s Paw of British imperial duplicity. In one of his speeches in Malaya, Nehru said: “Jinnah reminds me of the man who was charged with the murder of his mother and father and begged the clemency of the court on the ground that he was an orphan.” In 1938, Nehru said: “The League leaders had begun to echo the Fascist tirade against democracy. Nazis were wedded to negative policy. So also the League. The League was anti-Hindu, anti-Congress and anti-national. The Nazis raised the cry of hatred against the Jews, the League raised its cry against the Hindus.” Nehru said: “It is better to give Pakistan to Jinnah than to suffer his grumbles.” Nehru in his interview with the Cabinet Mission on 10th June 1946 said: “The Congress was going to work for a strong center and to break the group system and they would succeed.” Nehru further said that Jinnah does not have any real place in the country. The Congress Working Committee tried to undo the damage done by Nehru’s statement. But the damage could not be undone. In the words of Azad: “Mr. Jinnah did not accept the position and held that Nehru’s statement represented the real mind of the Congress. If the Congress could change so many times while the British were still in the country and power had not come to its hands. What assurance would minorities have that once the British left, the Congress would not again change and go back to the position taken up in Jawaharlal’s statement.

439

On 6th July 1946 at the All India Congress Committee Nehru said: “…It was not a question of Congress accepting any plan, long or short. It is merely a question of their agreeing to enter the Constituent Assembly and nothing more than that. They would remain in the Constituent Assembly so long as they thought that it was for India’s good and they would come out when they thought it was injuring their cause. We are not bound by a single thing except that we have decided for the moment to go to the Constituent Assembly.” With regard to the question of Grouping Nehru said: “The big probability is from any approach to the question, there will be no Grouping…There is going to be finally no Grouping. This Grouping business, approached from any point of view, does not get us on at all.” Jinnah charactarised Nehru’s statement as a complete repudiation of the basic form on which the long term plan rests and all its fundamentals and terms and obligations and rights of parties accepting the plan. In a Press Conference held on 10th July 1946, Nehru said: “The Congress would enter the Constituent Assembly completely unfettered by the agreements and free to meet all situations as they arise. He emphatically said that the Congress had agreed only to participate in the Constituent Assembly and regarded itself free to change or modify the Cabinet Mission Plan as it thought best.” Michael Brecher described Nehru’s statement as one of the most fiery and provocative statements. He told the world that once in power, the Congress would use its strength at the center to alter the Cabinet Mission Plan as it thought fit.

440

Nehru told Michael Brecher: “We saw no other way of getting our freedom in the near future. And so we accepted and said, let us build up a strong India and if others do not want to be in it, well, how can we and why should we force them to be in it.” Saeed R. Khairi held: “Nehru and not Jinnah destroyed the unity of India by his rejection of the Cabinet Mission Plan, which forced the Muslims to Pakistan.” Louis Heren, a Correspondent of the “Times of India” London in conversation with Kuldip Nayar in 1947 quoted Jinnah as having said: “Nehru was responsible for partition; had he agreed to the League joining U.P. Government Pakistan.” Nehru in his broadcast on 3rd June 1947 said: “I am convinced that our decision to divide India is the right one even from the larger point of view.” Disagreeing with the 3rd June 1947 Plan, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad said: “I told Jawaharlal that I could not possibly accept his view. I saw quite clearly that we were taking one wrong decision after another. Instead of retracting our steps, we are now going deeper in the morass. The Muslim League had accepted the Cabinet Mission Plan and a satisfactory solution of the Indian problem seemed in sight. Unfortunately, the position changed and Mr. Jinnah got a chance of withdrawing from the League’s earlier acceptance of the Plan. I warned Jawaharlal that history would never forgive us if we agreed to partition. The verdict would then be that India was divided as much by the Muslim League as by the Congress.” in 1937, there would have been no

441

In his speech in 1949-50, Nehru said: “We came to the conclusion that partition was probably a lesser evil. We were anxious to have freedom as quickly as possible, so we agreed to partition.” Some years later Nehru said: “The partition of India became inevitable, I should say, less than a year, before it occurred. I thought now, looking back, the partition could have been avoided, if British Government’s policy had been different. Nehru told Leonard Mosley in an interview: “The truth is that we were tired men and we were getting on in years too. Few of us could stand for a united India, as we wished it, prison probably awaited us. We saw fires burning in the Punjab and everyday of the killings. The plan for partition offered a way out and we took it.” Rammanohar Loya said: “When the proposal of partition was debated in the Congress Working Committee, I made a plea for the rejection of two-nation theory. Gandhi endorsed it, which made Nehru throw a fit. To him this continual harping on Hindus and Muslims being brothers and one nation, when they were flying at each other’s throat, appeared fantastic, as also the continual debate with Jinnah. I intervened to say how fantastic his observation was? Had the Americans ceased to be brothers and one nation, because they had fought a war amongst themselves and killed hundreds of thousands, the North against the South? Nehru knew how to smile at a lost point. But men like me were only scoring wordy points.” Loya wrote in 1946: “He had a private discussion with Nehru on the advise of Gandhi. Nehru was ready to accept partition.” He said, ‘What is there in East Bengal

442

except water and jungle and mud? The Hindustan that you and I know is not that Hindustan.’ Nehru had accepted partition as vital for India’s independence. S.Gopal, the biographer of Nehru writes: “Even before Mountbatten came to India, both British Government and the Congress Party (Nehru) had come round to the view that there was no alternative to accepting Jinnah’s demand in some form or the other.” Minoo Masani, who was a member of the Constituent Assembly said: “…Nehru and Patel were impatient and wanted the Muslims to get out, so that they could be masters in their homes without any further delay. The igotism of Jinnah on one side and Nehru on the other, came in the way of a united India being independent. Gandhi’s offer of the Prime Ministership to Jinnah, which would have solved the problem, was blocked by Nehru and Patel.”
(From Raj to Rajiv: Mark Tully & Zareer Masani, pg 15)

Treaty of Filkins 1938: Cripps assured Mountbatten of Nehru’s Cooperation as per their secret Treaty in Filkins in 1938. The text of this Treaty can be found in the book, “Empire or democracy,” by Leonard Barnes. The reference of this Treaty has also been made by Attlee. While referring to the failure of Cripps Mission of 1942, Attlee writes: “It went far beyond anything previously conceived by any government. It embodied in fact some of the main ideas discussed by Cripps, Nehru and myself one weekend at Filkins (June 25, 1938).” Barns, who was also present at that secret meeting gave an interview to Partha Ghosh and confirmed that such a secret meeting was held and a Treaty was signed.

443

This meeting took place at the residence of Cripps where Attlee, Laski, Nehru and V.K.Krishna Menon were present and after this meeting Cripps visited India many times for finding solution. He nursed the idea of Partition. Before the arrival of Mountbatten to India, Menon had given him a note, which stated that to maintain peace in the period of transfer of power, the demand of Muslim League for separate Sovereign State be accepted.
(Jinnah-Man of Destiny by Prakash Almeida, pg 229)

Nehru and Sardar had accepted partition in their minds. Before they said yes to it, they neither consulted the All India Congress Committee nor Gandhi. Gandhi was shocked when he came to know. His instant reaction was: “Everyone today is impatient for independence. Congress has practically decided to accept partition. They have been handed a wooden loaf. If they eat it, they die of colic; if they leave it, they starve.” Nehru’s stand and statements seem to be calculated to provoke Jinnah to eliminate him from his (Nehru) way to accomplish the goal set by him to become the first Prime Minister of India. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s Role: Maulana Azad holds that Sardar Patel was the founder of partition of India. Azad says that Jinnah may have raised the flag of partition, but the real flag bearer was Sardar Patel. Azad further says that two-nation theory of Jinnah and demand for Pakistan were only slogan-a bargaining counter for Jinnah whereas by early 1947, Patel was greater supporter of the two-nation theory. Tayebullah, a Congressman from Assam holds Patel and also Nehru as authors of partition. “Patel and

444

Nehru,” writes Tayebullah, “will be known to posterity as the co-architects of Indian partition. Patel and Nehru made partition a Fait-accompli. It was they who signed Mountbatten’s Decree of 3rd June 1947. That decree was best executed in the Congress Assizes.” Azgar Ali Engineer says: “It would be wrong to entirely blame Jinnah and the Muslim League for partition. Nehru and Patel were also responsible for it.” With his experience in the Interim Government, Sardar realized that Gandhi’s stipulation to agree to partition only after the departure of the third party i.e. British would only prolong the British rule and would therefore be self-destructive. Sardar Patel told the Associated Press of America in May 1947 that the aim of the Congress was to have a strong Center, but if the Muslim League insists on separation, the Congress will not compel them to remain by force.” While speaking on the 3rd June Plan in the All India Congress Committee, Sardar Patel said: “Looking at the Cabinet Mission proposals, he was not at all sorry that the Statement of May 16, had gone. Had they accepted it, the whole of India would have gone the Pakistan way. Today, they have 70% to 80% of India, which they could develop and make strong according to their genius.” Later justifying the decision of partition, Sardar said: “By accepting partition, we could end the quarrel between Hindus and Muslims. If two brothers cannot stay together, they divide. After separation, with their respective shares, they become friends. If on the other

445

hand, they are forced to stay together they tend to fight everyday.” On 5th July 1947, Sardar said: “We are on the threshold of independence. It is true that we have not been able to preserve the unity of the country entirely unimpaired in the final stage. To the bitter disappointment and sorrow of many of us some parts have chosen to go out of India and to set up their own Government. But there can be no question that despite separation, a fundamental homogeneity of culture and sentiment reinforced by the compulsive logic of mutual interests would continue to govern us.” On 11th August 1947, Sardar said: “Inspite of my previous opposition to partition, I agreed to it because I was convinced that in order to keep India united it must be divided.” Sardar further said: “My experience of office in the Interim Government showed that it was impossible to do anything constructive with the Muslim League. The League representatives during their continuance in the office did nothing but create deadlock and their role was entirely an obstructionist one. The Muslims save for a few exceptions, enganged in all capacities in the Government were with the Muslim League. Thus, the rot that had set in could not be permitted to prolong any longer except at the risk of a disaster for the whole country. In order to settle the issue immediately and prevent the slaughter of innocent people, the Congress agreed to the division of India.” In his another speech in Delhi on 11th August 1947 Sardar said: “I have agreed to the partition of the country not because of fear or out of sense of defeat. Under the prevailing conditions in the country, partition was the

446

best thing possible and I have no qualms about it.” Sardar further said: “I however, strongly believe that those who have seceded today will be disillusioned soon and their union with the rest of India is assured. What nature and God had intended to be one can on no account be split in two for all time.” Sardar continued: “India is one and indivisible. One cannot divide the sea or split the running water of a river. The Muslims have their roots in India. Their sacred places, their cultural centers are located here in India. I do not know what they can do in Pakistan and it will not be long before they begin to return. If we had not accepted partition, India would have broken in pieces.” In his public speech on the same day at the Ram Lila Grounds in Delhi, Sardar said that as there was intense communal hatred Congress came to the among the services, that in the such conclusion

circumstances, instead of fighting and tolerating the interference of the third party, it is better to separate. Sardar vehemently said: “Whatever some people may say, I am convinced and remain convinced that our having agreed to partition has been for the good of the country. And therefore, I have never repented my agreeing to partition.” Sardar in his speech at Patiala on 22nd October 1947 said: “When we accepted division, it was like our agreement to have a deceased limb amputed so that the remaining may live in a sound condition.” In his public speech at Rajkot on 12th November 1947 Sardar said: “When we accepted partition, we did so in the hope of a final settlement of a brotherly dispute. We felt that by satisfying the obstinate demand of a

447

brother, who had been a part of the joint family, we would bring peace to both of us and prosperity to all. But hardly had partition been effected when the Punjab disturbances engulfed us.” Sardar further said: “I bear Pakistan no illwill; I wish them God-speed; let them only leave us to persue our own salvation and stop meddling with our affairs even in places like far off Tripura. We shall then each settle down to our respective destiny. May be, after we have become prosperous, they themselves will awaken to the need of reunion in the best interest of both. It is neither our business nor our intention to force reunion. We only wish to be left alone so that both can live in peace and prosperity, happiness and harmony. Sardar in his speech on 3rd January 1948 at Calcutta said: “India only wishes to be left alone. I would tell Pakistan, you have now got Pakistan. I wish you joy of it. It is only when your teeth are soured that you need come back to us. You want to make Pakistan a heaven on earth. We ourselves welcome it, for after all we shall also benefit from it. But the Pakistan authorities say that their enemies are conspiring to destroy Pakistan. I would say to them that the enemies of Pakistan are not outside Pakistan but inside.” At the end of his speech Sardar said: “We shall not ask Pakistan to come back to us until it has realized its error. If we had not accepted the partition, India would have broken into bits. I have no doubts that small bits of territory round India would themselves seek our shelter.” Addressing the Assam Regiment Club in Shillong on 2
nd

January 1948 Sardar said: “Our country has been

divided. Our conception of division was as between two brothers who could not live together.”

448

In a speech in Madras on 23rd February 1949 Sardar said: “I honestly believe that it is good for both the new nations to be rid of a perpetual source of trouble and quarrels. In 200 years of slavery, the administrtion created a situation in which we began to drift from each other. It is good that we have agreed to partition despite its evils. I have never repented my agreeing to partition. From the experience of one year of joint Government, had not we agreed to partition, we would have suffered grieviously and repented. Therefore, whatever people may say, I am convinced and remain convinced that our having agreed to partition has been for the good of the country.” K.L.Punjabi in his book, “Indomitable Sardar” says: “Sardar’s reasons for accepting partition was clear enough. He had been exasperated by the British policy of remaining neutral, but holding on to power.” In 1947, Sardar Patel and K.M.Munshi were living in Birla House in New Delhi. They often used to walk together; on such occasions whenever Sardar was in a mood, he would talk to Munshi about some problem of the day which was uppermost in his mind. One day, while talking, Sardar began to tease Munshi: “Well, Akhand Hindustani, we are now going to divide India.” Munshi was shocked, for he (Sardar) had all along criticized Rajaji bitterly for his pro-partition views. When Munshi expressed his surprise that he had agreed to partition, Sardar put forward two grounds. One was that, the Congress being pledged to non-violence, it was not possible for it to resist violently. Even if it changed its creed, violent resistance at that stage would have meant the end of the Congress-a long struggle with

449

the Muslim League through large scale conflicts involving violence, while the British Government would be sitting tight over the country with its police and army. The second ground that Sardar gave to Munshi was that if partition were not accepted, there was bound to be long-drawn-out communal strife in cities and rural areas and even the army and the police would be torn by communal dissensions. The Hindus, being less fanatic, were sure to lose for want of a competent organization. If, on the other hand, the strife had to come, it would be best to deal with it on the basis of organized Governments; perhaps it would also be easier to come to a settlement as between two Governments rather than as between two communities spread all over the country. Sardar further told Munshi: “I had bitter experience of Hindu-Muslim riots, with the British officers invariably having sympathy for the Muslims. With my knowledge of the Udaipur troops, I also felt very doubtful whether even the armies which were maintained by the Indian Rulers had the strength to stop the communal orgies in their States.” After listening to Sardar, Munshi writes: “The soundness of Sardar’s opinion was brought home to me when, in the light of the riots of 1946-47, I realized that if there had been no partition and the Muslim League had come into the Constituent Assembly, as envisaged by the Cabinet Mission Plan, our efforts to found a sovereign democratic State would have failed.” Munshi further writes: “….But Gandhiji was very unhappy, now that partition was certainty. He held the view that, rather than concede partition, the Congress should let Jinnah alone form the Government of a United

450

India, and it should go into opposition and start a mass movement. Sardar was not impressed with this stand. The country was too tired to undertake such a movement and was anxious to seize the opportunity of securing freedom.”
(Pilgrimage to Freedm: K.M.Munshi, pg 126-28)

Sardar was so frustrated and disgusted by Jinnah and his League that he wanted to get rid of both. Way back in 1946, Nichaldas C Vazirani had written a letter to Sardar Patel from Karachi on 23rd May 1946 in which he said: “…I have no doubt in my mind that your strong stand has achieved success for India. I have always believed that weakness never pays. I have read Mr. Jinnah’s statement. He has pleased himself by calling the two alleged groups as two Pakistans. This indicates that he or his Working Committee is going to accept the proposals. A bully is always a coward and he and his Muslim League Nawabs answer that description fully.” Sardar Patel replied to Nichaldas Vazirani vide his letter of 2nd June 1946 in which he said: “…I hope we will hear no more of that mischievous cry of Pakistan. In any event, the Muslim League will expect no such thing from the British Government or to secure any assistance from that quarter for that purpose.” Sardar further wrote: “The Muslim League asked for parity but I opposed it stoutly. Parity in any shape or form is against the very principles of democracy and no amount of quibbling can justify it. Indeed Syed has got a very good opportunity to strike at Jinnah because Jinnah and the League have secured nothing for the Muslims

451

after a struggle of five years against the Congress and after the spreading of so much communal bitterness. His main demand of Pakistan is buried forever. His demand for parity is not accepted. The Muslims in Hindu majority provinces have lost weightage in the Constituent Assembly. They will be in a hopeless minority. The principle of representation on a population basis is accepted. The only thing he got, as a face-saving device, is grouping which, will be seriously opposed by his own people. “The Muslim Leaguers in their convention at Delhi took oath under which they are bound not to enter the Interim Government till the principle of Pakistan is accepted. All of them are now anxious to go in in spite of the pledge. You will soon find cracks and quarrels in the Muslim League everywhere.”
(Sardar Patel’s Correspondence: Durga Das, Vol.4,pg 103-105)

Nothing of the sort happened. Contrary, an agreement had to be signed between the Congress, the Muslim League and the Nawab of Bhopal on 4th October 1946, which said: “The Congress does not challenge and accepts that the Muslim League now is the authoritative representative democratic of an overwhelming they alone majority have of the an Muslims of India. As such and in accordance with principles today unquestionable right to represent the Muslims of India.” Sardar Patel in his letter of 15th December 1946 to Stafford Cripps said: “…You called the League delegation at a time when there was some realization that violence is a game at which both parties can play and the mild Hindu also, when driven to desperation, can retaliate as brutally as a

452

fanatic Muslim. Just when the time for settlement was reached Jinnah got the invitation, and he was able to convince the Muslims once again that he has been able to get more concessions by creating trouble and violence. “I will only say that if strong action had been taken, or had been allowed to be taken here, when “Direct Action day,” was fixed by the Muslim League and when 16th August was fixed as a day of demonstration in Calcutta, all the colossal loss of life and property and blood-curdling events would not have happened. The Viceroy here took the contrary view, and every action of his since the “Great Calcutta Killing,” has been in the direction of encouraging the Muslim League and putting pressure on us towards appeasement. “You must have seen what Jinnah has said in London immediately after the debate. He swears by Pakistan, and everything conceded to him is to be used as a lever to work to that end. You wish that we should agree to help him in his mad dream. …You know when Gandhiji was strongly against our settlement, I threw my weight in favour of it. You have created a very unpleasant situation for me….”
(Sardar Patel’s Correspondence; Durga Das, Vol.3, pg 314-15)

Jinnah was certainly responsible for creating Pakistan. But Gandhi, Nehru and Patel were equally responsible for vivisection of India. Gandhi for his helplessness and inconsistency or for the reasons best known to him, Nehru for his impatience to be the first Prime Minister of Independent India and Sardar for his disgust and frustration. However, Jinnah repented for his blunder and Gandhi fell victim to Nathuram Godse’s bullets. Sardar died with a feeling of injustice done to him

453

by his mentor. It was Jawaharlal Nehru, who not only enjoyed the fruits of vivisection of India, but created psychological impact on the minds of Indian voters that India will be safe only in the hands of Nehru family. And after him, his daughter Indira Gandhi became Prime Minister. After Indira Gandhi’s assassination, her Pilot son Rajive Gandhi was hastily sworn in as Prime Minister. After his tragic death in bomb blast, his wife Sonia Gandhi, who had threatened to divorce Rajiv, if he entered politics has become Congress Supremo and its saviour. But for her, the Congress party in the recent elections to the Parliament would not have emerged single largest party to make Dr. Manmohan Singh Prime Minister of India. It must be said to the credit of Mrs Sonia Gandhi that she refused to be the Prime Minister in spite of unanimous vote. Her decision is said to have based on her inner voice. She is the only person, after Mahatma Gandhi, who went by inner voice and remained firm on it. Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru had serious disagreement over the future of Congress. Gandhi saw it as an independence movement, which should be disbanded after it had achieved its aim. But Nehru insisted that Congress was the only institution with the deep roots in the villages, which were essential if democracy was to survive and flower. Almost sixty years after, it is those roots which have dried up; and they have dried up because the Nehru dynasty has become like a banyan tree, in the shade of which nothing grows. The Congress party even today, remains only the truly national party and the Congress leaders have continued to bowing to the will of the Nehru dynasty. The

454

cheer leaders who warm up party meetings shout: Jai Mahatma Gandhi. Jai Jawwaharlal Nehru. Jai Indira Gandhi. Jai Rajiv Gandhi and now Jai Sonia Gandhi. Mrs Indira Gandhi did not have enough selfconfidence to be able to make extempore speeches; She had to prepare a text. But the speed with which she picked up was quite amazing and impressive. Once she began to gain in political strength, then all her other abilities blossomed forth. Mrs Sonia Gandhi has in toto adopted the political style of Mrs Indira Gandhi and is marching on her footsteps. It appears that she will shape herself as the “Empress of India,” on the lines of her mother-in-law.

*******

455

CAN PAKISTAN AND INDIA LIVE AS GOOD NEIGHBOURS

Ever since 1947, Indo-Pak relations have been disturbed and distrusting. In October 1947, about 5000 tribesmen, led by the Pakistani Army, captured large parts of Jammu and Kashmir. India accused Pakistan of sending its regular troops. Pakistan flatly denied that regular army troops were involved. The Security Council of the United Nations set up the Union Commission in India and Pakistan (UNCIP) under the chairmanship of Dr. Joseph Korbel to assess the claims of the two countries. The UN officials asked Pakistan to withdraw its troops in 1948. Pakistan launched covert “Operation Gibralter” to seize Kashmir in a sharp short war. Its soldiers began to infiltrate disguised as local tribesmen. Pakistan reacted to the Indian accusation by denying the involvement of its armed forces. However, it was soon proved that these foreigners were from the Pakistani army. UN Military Observer, General Robert Nimmo reported the mass infiltration by the Pakistani army to the United Nations. Prior to Bangladesh war, Pakistani army unleashed a reign of terror on civilians-including killings, rapes, looting and brutalities. Nearly ten million refugees fled to India. Pakistan firmly denied that its troops had inflicted atrocities on civilians. Lt. General Niazi, Chief of Pakistan Eastern Command wrote in his book, “The Betrayal of East Pakistan:” “…General Tikka Khan turned the

456

peaceful might into a time of wailing, crying and burning. The military action was a display of stark cruelty, more merciless than the massacres at Bukhara and Baghdad by Changez Khan and Halaku Khan, or at Jalianwala Bagh by the British General Dyer.” Since 1989, India has been fighting low intensity warfare and infiltration of Pak-sponsored Jihad terrorism. In December 1999, Air-India Air Bus A-300 with 178 passangers on board was hijacked to Khandar.Pakistan denied pushing Jihadi terrorists but maintained that it supported freedom fighters. Maulana Masood Azhar, a Pakistan based terrorist was released in exchange for Indian hostages. He roams freely in Pakistan and has formed the militant group called Jaish-e-Mohammad, responsible for attacks on Parliament, civilians and security forces. He is on the US list of most wanted terrorists. These military conflicts have resulted in a situation where India and Pakistan are required to pump huge sums of money into defence.: Pakistan spends nearly two billion dollars a year on defence; India as estimated by the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies spends 6.3 billion dollars on defence. Neither country can afford such expenditure. Two-thirds of Pakistan’s 500,000 men military is positioned along the border with India. India has stationed several crack divisions of its 1.2 million strong armed forces on its side of the border. Both the countries have now nuclear weapons, the dangers of which are beyond expression. The divergence of national resources towards offensive purposes in the guise of defence expenditure has kept India and Pakistan both backward.

457

There is hardly any hope that India and Pakistan will live as good neighbors. Why? According to the Muslim Canon Law, the world is divided in two camps - Dar-ul-Islam (Abode of Islam) and Dar-ul-Harab (Abode of war). A country is Dar-ul-Islam, when it is ruled by Muslims, A country is Dar-ul-Harab, when only Muslims reside in it but are not rulers of it. That being the Canon Law of the Muslims, India cannot be the common motherland of the Hindus and the Musalmans. It cannot be the land of Hindus and the Musalmans living as equals. Further it can be the land of Musalmans only when it is governed by the Muslims. The moment the land becomes subject to the authority of a non-Muslim power, it ceases to be a land of Muslims. Instead of being Dar~ul-Islam, it becomes Dar-ul-Harab. There is another injunction of the Muslim Canon Law called Jihad (crusade) by which it becomes incumbent on a Muslim ruler to extend the rule of Islam until the whole world shall have been brought under its way. Tenet of Islam says that in a country, which is not under Muslim rule wherever there is a conflict between Muslim Law and Law of land, the former must prevail over the later and a Musalman will be justified in obeying the Muslim Law and defying the law of the land.
(Pakistan or Partition of India: Dr. B.R.Ambedkar, pg 292-94)

Maulana Mahmod Ali, during his prosecution, in justification of his plea of not being guilty in respect of the resolution passed by the All-India Khilafat Conference at Karachi on 8th July 1921 said: "Speaking as a Musalman, if I am supposed to err from the right path, the only way to convince me of my error is to refer me to the Holy Quran or to the authentic traditions of the last

458

Prophet, or the religious pronouncements of recognized Muslim divines, past or present, which purport to be based on these two original sources of Islamic authority demand from me the precise action for which a Government that does not like to be called Satanic is prosecuting me today. "Mahmod Ali further said: "Islam recognizes one sovereignty alone, the sovereignty of God which is supreme and unconditional, indivisible, and inalienable....The only allegiance a Muslim, whether civilian or soldier, whether living under a Muslim or under a non-Muslim administration, is commanded by the Quran to acknowledge is his allegiance to God, to his Prophet or successor of Prophet or Commander of the faithful. This doctrine of unity is not a mathematical formula elaborated by abstruse thinkers but a work-a-day belief of every Musalman learned or unlettered. Musalmans have before this and elsewhere too, lived in peaceful subjection to non-Muslim administration. But the unalterable rule is and has always been that as Musalmans they can obey only such laws and orders issued by their secular rulers as do not involve disobedience to the commandments of God who in the expressive language of the Quran is the 'all-ruling-ruler." This must make anyone wishing for a stable Government in India apprehensive. But this is nothing to the Muslim tenets, which prescribe when a country is motherland to the Muslims and when it is not. This view greatly influenced the conduct of the Muslims when the British occupied India. The British occupation raised no qualms in the minds of the Hindus. But so far as the Muslims were concerned, it at once raised the question whether India was any longer a

459

suitable place of residence for Muslims. A discussion was started in the Muslim community, which, according to Dr. Titus lasted for half a century, as to whether India was Dar-ul-Harab or Dar-ul-Islam. During the Khilafat agitation a good number of Muslims, who not only showed themselves ready to act in accordance with the Muslim Canon Law, but actually abandoned their homes in India and crossed over to Afghanistan. The world being divided into two camps, Dar-ul-Harab and Dar-ul-Islam, all countries come under one category or the other. Technically, it is the duty of the Muslim ruler, to transform Dar-ul-Harab into Dar-ul-Islam. And just as there are instances of the Muslims in India resorting to Hijrat, there are instances showing that they have not hesitated to proclaim Jihad. If India is not exclusively under Muslim rule, is a Dar-ul-Harab and the Musalmans, according to the tenets of Islam are justified in proclaiming a Jihad. To the Muslims, a Hindu is a Kaffir. A Kaffir is not worthy of respect. He is a low-born and without status. That is why a country, which is ruled by Kaffir is called Dar-ul-Harab by the Muslims. The third tenet is that Islam does not recognize territorial affinities. Here again Maulana Mahomed Ali will be the best witness. When he was committed to the session court in Karachi, addressing the Jury, he said: "A Musalman's faith does not consist merely in believing in a set of doctrines and living up to that belief himself, he must also exert himself to the fullest extent of his power, of course without resorting to any compulsion, to the end that others also confirm to the prescribed belief and practices. This is spoken of in the Holy Quran as Amribilmaroof and Nahi

460

amilmunkar; and certain distinct chapters of the Holy Prophet's tradition relate to this essential doctrine of Islam. A Musalman, cannot say, 1 am not my brother's keeper, for in a sense he is and his own salvation cannot be assured to him unless he exhorts others also to do good and dehorts them against doing evil. If therefore any Musalman is being compelled to wage war against the Mujahid of Islam, he must only be a conscientious objector himself, but must, if he values his own salvation, persuade his brothers also at whatever risk to himself to take similar objection. Then and not until then, can he hope for salvation. This is our belief as well as the belief of every other Musalman and in our humble way, we seek to live up to it; and if we are denied freedom to inculcate this doctrine, we must conclude that the land, where this freedom does not exist is not safe for Islam." Dr. B.R. Ambedkar in his Writings and Speeches, Vol. 8 at page 297 writes: "This is the basis of PanIslamism. It is this which leads every Musalman in India to say that he is a Muslim first and Indian afterwards. It is this sentiment which explains why the Indian Muslim has taken so small a part in the advancement of India, but has spent himself to exhaustion by taking up the cause of Muslim countries and why Muslim countries occupy the first place and India occupies a second place in his thoughts." Between 1912. when the first Balkan war began and 1922, when Turkey made peace with the European powers, the Indian Muslims did not bother about Indian politics in the least. They were completely absorbed in the fate of Turkey and Arabia. His Highness the Aga Khan justified it by saying: "This is a right and legitimate Pan-

461

Islamism

to

which

every

sincere

and

believing

Mahomedan belongs- that is, the theory of the spiritual brotherhood and unity of the children of the Prophet. It is a deep, perennial element in that Perso-Arabian culture, that great family of civilization to which we gave the name Islamic in the first chapter. It connotes charity and goodwill towards fellow-believers every where from China to Moroco, from the Volga to Singapore. It means an abiding interest in the literature of Islam, in her beautiful arts, in her lovely architecture, in her entrancing poetry. It also means a true reformation-a return to the early and pure simplicity of faith, to its preaching by persuasion and argument, to the manifestation of a spiritual power in individual lives, to beneficent activity of mankind. The natural and worthy spiritual movement makes not only the Master and His teaching but also His children of all climes an object of affection to the Turk or the Afghan, to the Indian or to the Egyptian. A famine or a desolating fire in the Muslim quarters of Kashgar or Sarajevo would immediately draw the sympathy and the material assistance of the Mahomedan of Delhi or Cairo. The real spiritual and cultural unity of Islam must ever grow, for to the follower of Prophet it is the foundation of the life of the souls." Aga Khan further said: "We can build a great South Asiatic Federation by laying the foundation wide and deep on justice, on liberty, and on recognition for every race, every religion, and every' historical entity."
(India in Transition: Aga Khan, pg 157)

The South Asiatic Federation was more for the good of the Muslim countries such as Arabia, Mesopotamia and Afghanistan than for the good of India. Dr. Ambedkar

462

said: "What a terrible thing it would have been if this South Asia Federation had come into being? Hindus would have been reduced to the position of a distressed minority. " The Indian Annual Register records: "Supporters of British Imperialism in the Muslim community of India have also been active trying by the organization of an Anglo-Muslim alliance to stabilize the rule of Britain in Southern Asia, from Arabia to the Malaya, Archipelago, where in Muslims will be junior partners at present, hoping to rise in time to senior partnership."
(Dr. B.R.Ambedkar: Writings and Speeches, Vol. 8, pg 299)

This shows how the thoughts of Indian Muslims were occupied by consideration of Muslim countries other than those of India. The situation is no better today. In his presidential address to the Congress in 1923, Mahomed Ali had said: "Many have compared Mahatma Gandhi's teachings and latterly his personal sufferings, to those of Jesus. When Jesus contemplated the world at the outset of his ministry, he was called upon to make his choice of the weapons of reform...The idea of being all-powerful by self-suffering and resignation, and of over force by purity of heart, is as old as the days of Abel and Cain, the first progeny of man. "Be that as it may, it was just peculiar to Mahatma Gandhi also; but it was reserved for a Christ Government to treat as felon the most Christ-like man of our time and to penalize as a disturber of the public peace the one man engaged in public affairs who comes nearest to the Prince of Peace. The political conditions of India before the advent of the Mahatma resembled those of Judea on the eve of the Advent of Jesus, and the prescription that he

463

offered to those in search of a remedy for the ills of India was the same that Jesus had dispensed before in Judea. "The whole of the orthodox Muslim community took offence for Mahomed Ali's having shown such deference to Mr. Gandhi, who was a Kaffir, as to put him on the same pedestal as Jesus. Such praise of a Kaffir, they felt, was forbidden by the Muslim Canon Law. And therefore, Mahomed Ali had to recant.
(Dr. B.R. Ambedkar: Writings & Speeches, Vol. 8. pg 302-303)

Legacy of Muslim Invaders: The Muslim invaders have left behind them their aftermath. One aftermath is the bitterness between the Hindus and the Muslims. This bitterness is so deepseated that a century of political life has neither succeeded in assuaging it, nor in making people forget it. As the invasions were accompanied with destruction of temples and forced conversions, with spoliation of property, with slaughter, enslavement and abasement of men, women and children, what wonder if the memory of these invasions has ever remained green, as a source of pride to the Muslims and as a sense of shame to the Hindus. The Muslim invaders, came to India singing a hymn of hate against the Hindus. But, they did not merely sing their hymn of hate and go back burning a few temples on the way. They were not content with so negative result. They did a positive act, namely to plant a seed of Islam. The growth of this plant is remarkable. It has not been a summer sapling. It is as great and as strong as an oak. Even the Sikh axe could not fell this oak.

464

In one of his dispatches to Hajjaj, Mahommad-binQuasim is quoted to have said: "The nephew of Raja Dahir, his warriors and principal officers have been dispatched, and the infidels converted to Islam or destroyed. Instead of idol-temples, mosques and other places of worship have been created, the Kutbah is read, the call to prayers is read, so that devotions are performed at stated hours. The Takbir and praise to the Almighty God are offered every morning and evening. The work of Muhammad of Ghazni became pious tradition and was faithfully followed by those who came after him. In the words of Dr. Titus: "Muhammad Ghazni in his conquest of Ajmer destroyed pillars and foundations of the idol-temples, and built in their stead mosques and the precept of Islam and the customs of the laws were divulged and established. At Delhi, the city and its vicinity were freed from idols and idol worship and in the sanctuaries of the images of Gods mosques were raised by the worshippers of the one God." Qutb-ud-Din Aybak is also said to have destroyed nearly a thousand temples and then raised mosques on their foundations. Dr. Titus states that he built Jama Masjid, Delhi and adorned it with the stones and gold obtained from the temples which had been demolished by elephants and covered it with inscriptions from Quran containing the divine commands. The inscription over the eastern gateway of the Jama Masjid relates that the materials of 27 idol temples were used in its constructions. Ala-ud-Din, in his zeal to build a second Minar to the Jama Masjid, demolished temples of the infidels to furnish a supply.

465

The Sultan Firoz Shah, in his Futuhat, graphically relates how he treated Hindus who had dared to build new temples. When they did this in Delhi and the environs, in opposition to the law of prophet, which declares that such are not to be tolerated under Divine guidance, I destroyed these edifices. I killed these leaders of infidelity and punished others with stripes, until this abuse was entirely abolished and where infidels and idolaters worshipped idols, Musalmans now by God's mercy perform their devotions to the true God. Badsha-nama records that Shah Jahan ordered that in Benares and every place in his domain, all temples that had been begun should be cast down. In the district of Benares alone 76 temples were destroyed. During the reign of Aurangzeb the temple of Vishwanath in Benares was destroyed in April 1669 A.D. All this was done with the ruling ideas of the leaders of Islam. These ideas were well expressed by the Kazi in reply to a question put by Sltan Ala-ud-Din wanting to know the legal position of the Hindus under the Muslim law. Kazi said: "They are called payers of tribute, when the revenue officer demands silver from them they should without question and with all humility and respect tender gold. If the officer throws dirt in their mouth, they must without reluctance open their mouths wide and receive it. The due subordination of Dhimmi is exhibited in his humble payment, and by this throwing dirt into their mouths. The glorification of Islam is a duty, and contempt for religion is vain. God holds them in contempt, for he says, 'Keep them in subjection,' To keep the Hindus in abasement is especially a religious duty, because they are the most inveterate enemies of the

466

Prophet, and because the Prophet has commanded us to slain them, plunder them, and make them captive saying, convert them to Islam or kill them, and make them slaves, and spoil their wealth and property. No doctor but the great Doctor-Hanifah, to whose school we belong, has assented to the imposition of Jizya on Hindus; doctors of other schools allow no other alternative but death or Islam."
(Dr. B.R. Ambedkar: Writings & Speeches, Vol. 8, pp 55-63)

Muslim Leaders’ Provoking Utterances: Writing in the Comrade of 14th January 1911, Mr. Mahomed Ali, who was the president of the Coconada session of the Congress in 1923 said: "We have no faith in the cry that India is united. If India was united where was the need of dragging the venerable president of this year's Congress from distant home? The bare imagination of a feast will not dull the edge of hunger. We have less faith still in the sanctimoniousness that transmutes in the subtle alchemy a rapacious monopoly into fervent patriotism the person we love best, fear the most, and trust the least is the impatient idealist. Goethe said of Byron that he was a prodigious poet, but that when he reflected he was a child. Well, we think no better and no worse of the man, who combines great ideals and a greater impatience. So many efforts, well meaning as well as ill-begotten, have failed in bringing unity to this distracted land, that we cannot spare even cheap and scentless flowers of sentiment for the grave of another illjudged endeavour. We shall not make the mistake of gumming together pieces of broken glass, and then cry over the unsuccessful result, or blame the refractory material. In another words, we shall endeavour to face the

467

situation boldly, and respect facts, howsoever, ugly and ill-favoured. inconvenient It is poor realities, statesmanship to slur over not the least important and

success in achieving unity is the honest and frank recognition of the deep-seated prejudices that hinder it and the yawning differences that divide." In 1926, there arose a controversy as to who really won the third battle of Panipat, fought in 1761. It was contended for the Muslims that it was a great victory for them, because Ahmad Shah Abdali had only one lakh of soldiers, while the Marathas had 4 to 6 lakhs. The Hindus replied that it was a victory to them, because it stemmed the tide of Muslim invasions. The Muslims were not prepared to admit defeat at the hands of Hindus and claimed that they "will always prove superior to Hindus. To prove the eternal superiority of Muslims over Hindus it was proposed by one Maulana Akbar Shah Khan of Najibabad that the Hindus and Muslims should fight, under test conditions, fourth battle on the same fateful plain of Panipat. The Maulana accordingly issued a challenge to Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya in the following terms: "If you, Malaviyaji, are making efforts to falsify the result at Panipat, I shall show you an easy and an excellent way of testing it. Use your well-known influence and induce the British Government to permit the fourth battle of Panipat to be fought without hindrance from the authorities. I am ready to provide a comparative test of the valour and fighting spirit of the Hindus and Musalmans. As there are seven crores of Muslims in India, I shall arrive on a fixed date on the plain of Panipat with 700 Musalmans representing the seven crores of Muslims in India and as there are 22

468

crores of Hindus, I allow you to come with 2200 Hindus. The proper thing is not to use canon, machine guns or bombs; only swords and javelins and spears, bows and arrows and daggers should be used. If you cannot accept the post of generalissimo of the Hindu host, you may give it to any descendent of Sadashivrao or Vishwasrao (Military Commanders of Marathas in the third battle of Panipat), so that their scions may have an opportunity to avenge the defeat of their ancestors in 1761. But any way do come as a spectator; for on seeing the result of this battle you will have to change your views, and I hope there will be then an end of the present discord and fighting in the country. In conclusion, I beg to add that among the 700 men that I shall bring there will be no Pathans or Afghans as you are mortally afraid of them. So ! shall bring with me only Indian Musalmans of good family, who are staunch adherents of Shariat." Maulana Azad Sobhani, in his speech made on 27th January 1927 at Sylhat said: "If there is any eminent leader in India who is in favour of driving out the English from this country; then I am that leader. In spite of this I want that there should be no fight with English on behalf of the Muslim League. Our big fight is with the 22 crores of our Hindu enemies, who constitute the majority. Only four and half crores of Englishmen have practically swallowed the whole world by becoming powerful. And if these 22 crores of Hindus who are equally advanced in learning, intelligence and wealth as in numbers, if they become powerful, then these Hindus will swallow Muslim India, and gradually even Egypt, Turkey, Kabul, Mecca, Medina and other Muslim principalities, like Yajuj-Majujit is so mentioned in Quran that before the distribution of

469

the world, they will appear on the earth and will devour whatever they will find..." Sobhani further said: The English are gradually becoming weak. They will go away from India in the near future. So if we do not fight the greatest enemies of Islam, the Hindus, from now on and make them weak, then they will not only establish Ramrajya in India but also gradually spread all over the world. It depends on the 9 crores of the Indian Muslims either to strengthen or to weaken them (Hindus). So it is the essential duty of every devout Muslim to fight on by joining the Muslim League. So that the Hindus may not be established here and a Muslim rule may be established in India as soon as the English depart." Sobhani continued: “Though the English are the enemies of the Muslims, yet for the present our fight is not with the English. At first we have to come to some understanding with the Hindus through the Muslim League. Then we shall be easily able to drive out the English and establish Muslim rule in India." Sobhani warned the Muslims to be careful and not to fall into the trap of Congress Maulvis; because the Muslim world is never safe in the hands of 22 crores of Hindu enemies. Warning of Mrs Annie Basent: Mrs Annie Basent during the Khilafat agitation declared: "Since Khilafat agitation, things have changed and it has been one of the many injuries inflicted on India by the encouragement of the Khilafat crusade that the inner Muslim feeling of hatred against 'unbelievers' has sprung up, naked and unashamed, as in the years gone by...We have heard Muslim leaders declared that if the Afghans invade India, they would join their fellow

470

believers, and would slay Hindus who defended their motherland against the foe. We have been forced to see that the primary allegiance of Musalmans is to Islamic countries, not to our motherland; we have learned that their dearest hope is to establish the 'Kingdom of God" not as God father of the world, loving all his creatures, but as a God seen through Musalman spectacles resembling in his command through one of the Prophets, as to the treatment of unbeliever-the Mosaic Jeiiova of the early Hebrews, when they were fighting as did the early Muslims for freedom to follow the religion given to them by their prophet." In a manifesto on Hindu-Muslim relations issued in 1928, Khwaja Hasan Nizami declared: "Musalmans are separate from Hindus; they cannot unite with the Hindus. After bloody wars Musalmans conquered India, and the English took India from them. The Musalmans are one united nation and they alone will be masters of India. They will never give up their individuality. They have ruled India for hundreds of years, and hence they have a prescriptive right over the country. The Hindus are a minor community in the world. They are never free from internecine quarrels; they believe in Gandhi and worship the cow; they are polluted by taking other people's water. The Hindus do not care for self-Government; they have no time to spare for it; let them go on with their internal squabbles. What capacity have they for ruling over men? The Musalmans did rule, and the Musalmans will rule." Ghazanfar Ali Khan on 1st June 1947 said: "There were fundamental differences between the Muslims and the Hindus, People our like Muhamad heroes, of Ghazni they and are Aurangzeb are national but

471

considered by the Hindus as their greatest enemies. Similarly, Shivaji is considered by us as our arch-enemy but is revered by Hindus as a national hero. What we eat away is considered by Hindus the greatest God," I.A. Mohajer, Salar-e-Subha of Bengal Muslim National Guards, on 18th May 1947 said: "The Muslims of Bengal would not allow an inch of land to be taken out of Pakistan-Bengal. If 17 " Muslims could conquer this province, several crores of them could certainly retain it. (Sardar Patel's Correspondence: Durga Das, Vol. 4, pg 389-90) Circular from Habibur Rehman: A circular was issued by the Working Committee of the Muslim League under the signature of Habibur Rehman in which it was said: “All Muslims of India should die for Pakistan; with Pakistan established, the whole of India should be conquered; the people of India should be converted to Islam; the Muslim kingdom should join hands with AngloAmerican exploitation of the whole world; one Muslim must get rights of five Hindus i.e. each Muslim is equal to five Hindus.” Until Pakistan and Indian empire is established, the following action will be taken: “All factories and shops owned by the Hindus should be burnt, destroyed and looted and the loot should be given to League offices. All Muslim Leaguers should carry weapons in defiance of orders. All temples should be destroyed. Hindus should be murdered gradually and their population should be reduced. All nationalist Muslims, if they do not join the League, must be murdered by secret League Gestapo. Muslim League spies should be kept in every village and district of India.

472

Congress leaders should be murdered one in one month by some method. Congress papers, offices should be destroyed by secret Muslim Gestapo. Karachi, Bombay, Calcutta, Madras, Vizagapattam, Goa should be paralysed by December 1946 by Muslim League volunteers. Muslims should never be allowed to work under Hindus in the Army Navy, government services or private firms. Muslims should sabotage the whole of India and Congress Government for the invasion of India by Muslims. Financial resources are given for the Muslim League invasion of India by Nizam, Communists, few Europeans, Khojas, by Bhopal and a few others; Anglo-Indians, a few Parsees and a few Christians. The Punjab, Sind and Bengal will be places of manufacture of all war weapons for Muslim Leaguers invasion and establishing Muslim Empire of India. All arms and weapons should be distributed to Bombay, Calcutta, Delhi, Madras, Bangalore, Lahore, Karachi branches of the Muslim League. All sections of Muslims should carry minimum equipments of weapon–at least pocket knife, all the times to destroy Hindus and drive all Hindus from India. All transport should be used and organized for battle against Hindus. Hindu women and girls should be raped, kidnapped and converted to Muslims from 19th October 1946. Hindu culture should be destroyed. All Leaguers must try to be cruel at all times to Hindus and boycott them socially, economically and in many other ways. No Muslim should buy from Hindu dealers. All Hindu produced films should be boycotted. All Muslim Leaguers should obey these instructions and bring into action by 15th September 1946.”
(Sardar Patel’s Correspondence: Durga Das, Vol. 3, pg 87-88)

473

Hazrat Maulana Siddiq Deendar, who posed himself as the ‘Avatar’ of Channa Basweshwar preached: “My Muslim brethren! The Quran has taught you only one thing: that is to change the country in which you live in into Pakistan; in other words, to compel others to drink of the water of the ‘Quran-e-Majid. A bowel containing one quarter milk and three-quarters dung cannot be called clean. Whether it is Arbastan or Turkestan or Afghanistan, so long it contains Kafiristan in its territory, it cannot be called Pakistan.” Siddiq declared Jihad against the shrines of the Hindus and issued a public appeal for one lakh volunteers and a loan of Rs. 500,000 for the purpose.
(The End of an Era: K.M.Munshi, pg 40-41)

Master-racist Attitude: Dr. K.M. Munshi in his book, “Pilgrimage to Freedom,” at pages 71-72 writes: “The parting of the ways between National Democracy and the Master-racist attitude was complete. To many of the Master-racist who gathered under the leadership of the Muslim League, Pakistan was not a goal; it was a step to gain a solid base from which to conquer Hindu India, as their imaginary ancestors had done, if necessary with foreign aid. It was a price that was demanded of the nationalists, if India had to secure freedom from the British rule. The choice before nationalist India was between the devil and the deep sea. “Even after the price was paid, there were certain sections, who could not out-grow the master race complex. In 1948, Kasim Razvi, a U.P. Muslim and the leader of the Ittehad, adopted the Master-racist attitude towards the Hindus on India’s achieving freedom from the British rule. In his speeches, Kasim Razvi used to say, a

474

Hindu who is a Kafir, a worshiper of stone and monkey, who drinks cow’s urine and eats cow-dung in the name of religion and who is a barbarian in every sense of the word, wants to rule over us! What an ambition and what a daydream!….Hyderabad will shortly recover ceded districts. The day is not far off when the waves of the Bay of Bengal will be washing the feet of our sovereign, who will not be called the Nizam of Hyderabad and Berar, but also the Northern Sarcars.” Instead of washing the feet of Nizam, Kasim Razvi himself washed away to Pakistan. Munshi further writes: “…The declaration made by Zulffikar Ali Bhutto, Foreign Minister of Pakistan in the Security Council of the United Nations that the Muslims had ruled over the civilized India for 800 years and that they would do it again, expresses crudely the master-race complex towards Hindus, which even after partition, characterized some Muslim leaders in Pakistan.” Hindu-Muslim Menace: The Muslims and Hindus were engaged in making preparations against each other without abatement. It was like a race in armaments between two hostile nations. If the Hindus had the Benares Hindu University, the Muslims had the Aligarh Muslim University, If the Hindus started Shuddhi movement, the Muslims launched the Tabliq movement. If the Hindus started Sanghatan, the Muslims countered it by Tanjim. If the Hindus had the R.S.S., the Muslims replied it by organizing the Khaksars. This race in social armament and equipment was run with the determination and apprehension characteristic of nations, which were on the war-path. The Muslims feared that the Hindus were subjugating them. The Hindus felt that the Muslims were engaged in re-conquering them.

475

Both appeared to be preparing for war and each was watching the preparation of the other. It was a vicious circle. If the Hindus made themselves stronger, the Musalmans felt menaced. The Muslims endeavoured to increase their forces to meet the menace and the Hindus then did the same to equalize the position. As the preparations proceeded, so did the suspicion, the secrecy, and the plotting. The possibilities of peaceful adjustment were poisoned at the source and precisely because everyone was fearing and preparing for it that "war' between the two tends to become inevitable. But in the situation in which they found themselves, for the Hindus and Muslims not to attend to anything, except to prepare themselves to meet the challenge of each other. It was a struggle for existence and the issue, that counted, was survival and not the quality or the plane of survival. So long as Hindus and Muslims regard each other as menace, they will be engrossed in preparations for meeting the menace. It is therefore, obvious that so long as one community looks upon the other as a menace there will be no social progress and the spirit of conservatism will continue to dominate the thoughts and actions of both. The prospects might perhaps be different if the past of the two communities can be forgotten by both. Renon points out the importance of forgetfulness as a factor in building up a nation: "Forgetfulness, and I shall even say historical error, form an essential factor in the creation of a nation; and thus it is that the progress of historical studies may often be dangerous to the nationality. Historical research, in fact, bring back to light the deeds of violence that have

476

taken

place

at

the

commencement

of

all

political

formations, even of those the consequences of which have been most beneficial. Unity is ever achieved by brutality. The union of Northern and Southern France was the result of an extermination, and of a reign of terror, that lasted for nearly a hundred years. The king of France who was, if I may say so, the ideal type of a secular crystalliser, the king of France who made the most perfect national unity in existence, lost his prestige when seen at too close a distance. The nation he had formed cursed him; and today the knowledge of what he was worth, and what he did, belongs only to the cultured. "It is by contrast that these great laws of the history of Western Europe become apparent. In the undertaking which the king of France, in part by his justice, achieved so admirably, many countries came to disaster. Under the crown of St. Stephen, Magyars, and Slavs have remained as distinct as they were 800 years ago. Far from combining the different elements in its dominion, the house of Hapsburg has held them a part and often opposed to one another. In Bohemia, the Czech element and the German element are super-imposed like oil and water in a glass. The Turkish policy of separation of nationalities according to religion has had much graver results. It has brought about the ruin of East. Take a town like Smyrna or Salonica; you will find there five or six communities each with its own memories, and possessing among them scarcely anything in common. But the essence of the nation is, that all its individual members should have things in common; and also that all of them should hold many things in oblivion. No French citizen knows whether he is a Burgundian, an Alan, or a

477

Visigoth; every French citizen ought to have forgotten St. Bartholomew, and the massacre of the South in the 13th century. There are not ten families in France able to furnish proof of a French origin; and yet even if such a proof were given it would be essentially defective, in consequence of a thousand unknown crosses, capable of deranging all genealogical systems." The pity of it is that the two communities can never forget or obliterate their past. Their past is imbedded in their religion, and for each to give up its past is to give up its religion. To hope for this is to hope in vain. Reasons for failure of Hindu-Muslim Unity: The failure of Hindu-Muslim unity lies in the causes, which take their origin in historical, religious, cultural and social antipathy, of which political antipathy is only a reflection. These form one deep river of discontent which being regularly fed by these sources keeps on mounting to a. head and overflowing its ordinary channels. Any current of 'water flowing from another source, however pure, when joins it, instead of altering the colour or diluting its strength becomes lost in the main stream. The silt of this antagonism, which this current deposited, has become permanent and deep. So long as this silt keeps on accumulating and so long as this antagonism lasts, it is unnatural to expect this antipathy between Hindus and Muslims to give place to unity. Like Christians and Muslims in the Turkish Empire, the Hindus and Muslims of India have met as enemies on many fields, and the result of the struggle has often brought them into the relation of conqueror and conquered. Whichever party has triumphed, a great gulf has remained fixed between the two and their enforced

478

political union either under the Moghuls or the British instead of passing over, as in so many other cases, into organic unity, has only accentuated their mutual antipathy. Neither religion nor social code could bridge this gulf. The two faiths are mutually exclusive and whatever harmonies may be forged in the interest of good social behaviour, at their core and center they are irreconcilable. There seems to be an inherent antagonism between the two, which centuries have not been able to dissolve. Notwithstanding the efforts made to bring the creeds together by reformers like Akbar and Kabir, the ethical realities behind each have still remained, to use the mathematical phrase, which nothing can alter to make integers capable of having a common denominator. The defects in Hinduism and Islam are responsible for keeping the sore between Hindus and Muslims open and running. Hinduism is said to divide people and in contrast Islam is a close corporation. The brotherhood of Islam is not universal brotherhood of man. It is brotherhood of Muslims for Muslims only. There is a fraternity, but its benefit is confined to those within the corporation. For those who are outside the corporation, there is nothing but contempt and enmity. The allegiance of a Muslim does not rest in his domicile in the country, which is his but on the faith to which he belongs. To the Muslim ibi bene ibi patrta is unthinkable. Wherever there is the rule of Islam, there is his own country. Islam can never allow a true Muslim to adopt India as his motherland and regard a Hindu as his kin and kith. That is probably the reason why Maulana Mahomed Ali, a great Indian, but a true Muslim preferred to be buried in Jerusalem rather than in India.

479

Speaking at Aligarh and Ajmer in 1924, Mr. Mahomed Ali said: "However pure Mr. Gandhi's character may be, he must appear to me from the point of view of religion inferior to any Musalman, even though he be without character." When Mr. Mahomed Ali was asked in Lucknow whether the sentiments attributed to him were true, he without any hesitation or compunction replied: "Yes, according to my religion and creed, I do hold an adulterous and a fallen Musalman to be better than Mr. Gandhi."
(Dr. B.R.Ambedkar: Writings & Speeches, Vol. 8, pg 302)

Dr. B.R. Ambedkar in his Writings and Speeches, Vol. 8 at pages 338 and 339 writes: "Hindu-Muslim politics has been marked by a tragic and ominous parallelism. The Hindus and Muslims have trodden parallel paths. They went in the same direction. But they never traveled the same road. In 1885, the Hindus started the Congress to vindicate the political rights of Indians as against the British. The Muslims refused to be lured by the Hindus into joining the Congress. Between 1885 and 1906 the Muslims kept out of this stream of Hindu politics. In 1906, they felt the necessity for the Muslim community taking part in political activity. Even then they dug their own separate channel for the flow of Muslim political life. The flow was to be controlled by a separate political organization called the Muslim League. Ever since the formation of the Muslim League, the waters of Muslim politics have flown in this separate channel. Except on rare occasions, the Congress and the League have lived apart and have walked apart. Their aims and objects have not always been the same. They have even avoided holding their

480

annual sessions at one and the same place, lest the shadow of one should fall upon the other. It is not that the League and the Congress have not met. The two have met but only for negotiations, a few times with success and most times without success. They met in 1916 at Lucknow and their efforts were crowned with success. In 1925 they met but without success. In 1928, a section of the Muslims were prepared to meet the Congress. Another section refused to meet. They have met but have never merged. Only during the Khilafat agitation did the waters of the two channels leave their appointed course to flow as one stream in one channel. It was believed that nothing will separate the waters which God was pleased to join. But that hope was belied. Within a few years of their confluence and as soon as the substance of the Khilafat cause vanished, the water from the one stream reacted violently to the presence of the other, as one does to the foreign substance entering one's body. Each began to show a tendency to throw out and to separate from the other. The result was that when the waters did separate, they did with such impatient velocity and determined violence against each other that thereafter they have been flowing in channel far deeper and far more distant from each other than those existing before. Indeed, the velocity and violence with which the two waters have burst out from the pool in which they had temporarily gathered have altered the direction in which they were flowing. "The Hindus saw that the Muslim move for independence was not innocent. It was to be used only to bring the Hindus out of the protecting shield of the British Empire in the open and then by alliance with the neighbouring countries and by their aid subjugate them.

481

For the Muslims independence was not the end. It was only a means to establish Muslim Raj. Muslims feared that under Dominion Status, the Hindus will establish Hindu Raj over them by taking benefit of the principle of one man one vote and one vote one value, and that however much the benefit of the principle is curtailed by weightage to Muslims, the result cannot fail to be a Government of the Hindus, by the Hindus and therefore for the Hindus." Indo-Pak Relations: Dr. Ambedkar at page 376 of the volume 8, writes: "...Pakistan is pregnant with mischief. It has two motives. One immediate, the other ultimate. The immediate motive is to join with the neighbouring Muslim countries and form a Muslim Federation to invade Hindustan and conquer or rather re-conquer the Hindus and re-establish Muslim Empire in India." The real explanation of the ideological transformation of the Muslim leaders is not to be attributed to any dishonest drift in their opinion. It appears to be the dawn of a new vision pointing to new destiny symbolized by new name, Pakistan. The Muslims appeared to have started a new worship of a new destiny for the first time. This is not really so. The worship is new because the sun of their new destiny, which was so far hidden in clouds has now only made its appearance in full glow. The magnetism of this new destiny cannot but draw the Muslims towards it. The pull is so great that even men like Mr. Jinnah have been violently shaken and have not been able to resist its force. This destiny spreads itself out in a concrete form over the map of India. No one, who just looks at the map, can miss it. It lies there as though it is

482

deliberately planned by providence as a separate National State for Muslims. Not only is the new destiny capable of being easily worked out and put in concrete shape but it is also catching because it opens the possibilities of realizing the Muslim idea of linking up all the Muslim kindred in one Islamic State and thus avert the danger of Muslims in different countries adopting the nationality of the country to which they belong and thereby bring about the disintegration of the Islamic brotherhood. With the separation of Pakistan from Hindustan, Iran, Iraq, Arabia, Turkey and Egypt are forming a Federation of Muslim countries constituting one Islamic State extending from Constantinpole down to Lahore. So obvious is the destiny that it is somewhat surprising that the Muslims should have taken so long to own it up. There is evidence that some of them knew this to be the ultimate destiny of the Muslims as early as 1923. In support of this, reference may be made to the evidence of Khan Saheb Sardar M. Gul Khan, who appeared as a witness before the North-West Frontier Committee appointed by the Government of India under the Chairmanship of Sir Dennis Bray, to report upon the administrative relationship between the Settled Districts of NWFP and the Tribal Area and upon the amalgamation of Settled Districts with the Punjab. The importance of this evidence was not realized by any member of the committee except Mr. N.M. Samarth, who was the one member who drew pointed attention to his minority report. To a question from Samarth, Gul Khan replied: "We would very much rather see the separation of the Hindus and Musalmans, 23 crores of Hindus to the South and 8

483

crores of Muslims to the North. Give the whole portion from Raskumari (Kanyakumari) to Agra to Hindus and from Agra to Peshawar to Muhammadens,"
(Dr. B.R. Ambedkar: Writings & Speeches, pg 331-33).

This evidence of Gul Khan shows that the idea underlying the scheme of Pakistan had taken birth some time before 1923, much before Jinnah adopted it. Bilateral Conflicts: India tried to have normal relations with Pakistan. Yet successive Governments of Pakistan based the survival and unity of their country on confrontation with India. This stood in the way of cooperation which would have been to their mutual benefit. Those who came to power in Pakistan had sided with the colonial power in undivided India and had opposed the national struggle. These ruling elements, especially after the establishment of a military dictatorship, set Pakistan on a course of pointless and seemingly endless conflict with India, Just as in the earlier days when the colonial power had used religious sentiments to blunt the nationalist drive in India, some powers sought to use Pakistan to offset India. Pakistan joined military alliances, which had been formed ostensibly to contain international communism, but which Pakistan used primarily in order to acquire weapons to be used against India. Moreover, it suited the West to play off Pakistan against India. China gave military assistance to Pakistan for the same purpose. So did the Soviet Union, later on, in order to maintain its leverage, but it soon discovered the hazards. The consequence of this assistance was to strengthen the militarist oligarchy in Pakistan and inhibit the growth of

484

democratic forces there. Hatred and suspicion of India were whipped up to maintain those in power and to divert the Pakistan people's attention from their demands. Kashmir as early as October 1947, was the first victim of aggression by Pakistan. This was at a time when there were no Indian forces at all in Kashmir-as acknowledged by the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, at that time, in the United Nations Security Council. A large part of that state had been under Pakistan's occupation for many years. India did not intend to recapture this territory by force; on several occasions Indian Government had given this assurance to Pakistan and offered to conclude a "no war pact.' Pakistan repeatedly rejected this offer, trying to invoke third-party intervention. Infiltrators and saboteurs had been sent into Kashmir and other territories, notably in the north east. Early in 1965, Kutch area was invaded, and later the same year the infiltration was escalated into an attack on Kashmir which led to fighting all along the western front. The background to the aggression against India in 1971, was the other battle which Pakistan had been waging against its own citizens of East Pakistan as it then was. Ten million destitute refugees poured into areas not only densely populated but also politically sensitive as a result of the activities of Marxists and the left-wing extremists called Naxalites. This posed unbearable strains on Indian economy and on social and administrative institutions. The terrible stories of genocide, and the comings and goings of Mukti Bahini, the resistance force of Bangladesh, created a volatile situation for India. Smt. Indira Gandhi told the leaders of the various countries which she visited in October 1971 that the

485

situation could not remain static. Several border clashes took place during these tense months, and there was one serious skirmish in November; but India treated these all as local incidents. In the last week of November, President Yahya Khan publicly announced that war would begin in ten days and, sure enough, on the tenth day there was a massive air attack on seven cities of India and a ground attack all along western border. Thus did Pakistan extend its war to India. However, when fourteen days later, on 16th December 1971, Pakistani troops surrendered on the eastern front, India unilaterally announced a ceasefire also on the western front. On the new Government. The 25th March 1972, India political map of the withdrew its troops from Bangladesh in consultation with subcontinent had been redrawn and the notion of an inherent and insuperable antagonism between a secular India and a predominantly Muslim State had been discredited-not through any design on India's part but because the idea itself was untenable and because the military dictatorship of Pakistan, totally alienated from its own people, had followed a short-sighted and unrealistic policy. In his address to the nation on 27th June" 1972. President Bhutto gave a perceptive account of events when he said: "The war we have lost was not of our making. 1 had warned against it but my warning fell on the deaf ears of power-drunk junta. They recklessly plunged our people into the war, and involved us in an intolerable surrender, and lost us half our country. The junta did not know how to make peace nor did it know how to make war."

486

Blaming Zulffikar Ali Bhutto for 1971 break up of Pakistan, General Pervez Musharaff in his memoir, “In the Line of Fire,” writes: “….I broke down and cried. All my brave soldiers cried with me. It remains the most sad and most painful day of my life. My anger at the General who had taken charge of Government and at some of the politicians of the time still makes me see red. “It was the nexus between Bhutto and a small coterie of rulers that destroyed Pakistan. The myopic rigid attitude of Bangladeshi leader Sheikh Mujibur Rehman did not help matters and he played into Bhutto’s General Yahya Khan’s hand by remaining rooted in East Pakistan. “I alongwith a company of Special Security Group (SSG) commandos was tasked to go East Pakistan before it fell. “My troops were brimming with confidence and we were all set to go when the ceasefire was announced and East Pakistan was forcibly torn away from us to form the separate State of Bangladesh. “What happened in East Pakistan is the saddest episode in Pakistan’s history. It was due to inept handling since independence. Blame ultimately fell on the army. As events developed, the army was confronted with an impossible situation – mass popular uprising within and invasion from without by India, supposedly non-aligned, but now being overtly helped by the Soviet Union under a Treaty of Peace and Friendship. It was actually an alliance of war. “Our long-time ally, the US, apart from making sympathetic noises, its hands were no where seen.”

487

The shocks of these events compelled Pakistan to exchange military dictatorship for civilian rule, and opened the door to a new possibilities for the peaceful resolution of the basic issues between the two countries. Smt. Gandhi took initiative to invite President Bhutto for discussions. These resulted in the Simla Agreement of 2 Ild July 1972, by which Pakistan and India proclaimed their determination to solve their conflicts bilaterally and without recourse to force, and to seek a durable peace and growing economic and cultural cooperation. The agreement, which held the promise of settlement of the Kashmir and boundary problems, had been welcomed by almost all the sections of the Indian people. Smt. Gandhi expressed hope that the implementation of the Simla Agreement, in the spirit in which it was made, will end the twenty-five year period of Pakistan's hatred of India, and that both countries will become good neighbors. Every Successor of Mrs Indira Gandhi made efforts to settle the differences with Pakistan by talks and negotiations. But their efforts proved exercises in futility including Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee’s Bus Diplomacy and Agra Summit. Agra Summit: In his book, In the Line of Fire, General Pervez Musharraf writes: “He and the then Prime Minister of India, Mr. Atal Behari Vajpayee had been humiliated at the Agra Summit in 2001 by some one above the two of them. Twice he had decided to cut short his stay in Agra after the Indians had backed out of what had been agreed earlier. However, he had been persuaded by his diplomats not to do so.

488

“After two prolonged interactions with Vajpayee, a balanced Joint Declaration acceptable to both of them was drafted. It contained a condemnation of terrorism and recognition of the fact that Kashmir needed to be resolved. “The signing ceremony was scheduled for the afternoon of 17th July 2001 in the hotel J.P. Palace, where Prime Minister Vajpayee was staying and where we held our dialogue. Preparations in the hotel were complete, down to the table and two chairs where we would sit for the signing ceremony. “Barely an hour later he had been informed by his Foreign Minister Abdul Sattar that the Indians have backed out as their Cabinet had rejected the draft. “There was no Indian Cabinet in Agra and I became very angry, and my impulse was to leave for Islamabad immediately. After being cooled down by my diplomats, I allowed them to try for a draft and cancelled my visit to Ajmer that evening. “The re-drafting took another two to three hours of intense haggling over words and sentences. But ultimately my team returned, signaling success. I told my wife that the Agra Declaration would hit the headlines the next day. “Yet this too was not to be. Just as I was about to leave for the signing ceremony, I received a message that the Indians had backed out again. This was preposterous. I decided to leave immediately, but my Foreign Minister persuaded me to call on Prime Minister Vajpayee before leaving. I consented to fulfill this diplomatic protocol, though much against my wishes.” Recalling his meeting with Vajpayee at 11.00 p.m., Musharaff writes: “I told him bluntly that there seems to be some one above the two of us who had the power to

489

overrule us. I also said that today both of us had been humiliated. He sat there speechless. I left abruptly after thanking him in a brisk manner.” Musharaff concludes: “Vajpayee failed to grasp the moment and lost his moment in history.” To this charge of Musharaff, Atal Behari Vajpayee issued a statement in which he said: “Everyone in our Government was acutely alive to the fact that there could be no normalcy in Indo-Pak relations until cross-border terrorism, which has cost thousands of lives, was ended. …I undertook the bus journey to Lahore to thrash out this and other issues in person. That trip yielded no results, and when the Government changed in Pakistan, I decided to invite General Musharaff to Agra. “General Musharaff, during the talks, took a stand that the violence that was taking place in Jammu and Kashmir could not be described as terrorism. He continued to claim that the bloodshed in the state was nothing but the battle for freedom. “It was later in Islamabad in January 2004, that Pakistan came round to our view point by agreeing not to allow any land under its control to be used for terrorist strikes against India. That yielded the joint statement in Islamabad, and became the starting point for the composite dialogue. “Had Musharaff accepted India’s position at Agra, the three subsequent years could have proved valuable for taking forward the initiative.” Mr. Brajesh Mishra, who was Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee’s National Security Adviser and a key player during the Agra and Islamabad talks says: “Agra talks failed as Pakistan insisted on a joint statement,

490

which would accord primacy to the Kashmir issue and, at the same time, Musharaff refused to acknowledge the phenomenon of cross-border terrorism. “Musharaff was doubly humiliated in Islamabad exactly two-and-a-half years later on 6th January 2004, when he agreed to a reference to Indian concern over cross-border terrorism and he agreed that he will not allow any territory to be used for terrorism anywhere in the world.” On humiliation of Vajpayee and Musharaff by some one above the two of them, Mishra says: “At that time in Agra, apart from the Prime Minister, Home Minister L.K.Advani, External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh, Finance Minister Yeshwant Sinha and Commerce Minister Murasoli Maran were present…Except for the Defence Minister, all members of the Cabinet Committee on Security were present. And it was this body of ministers, which decided to reject the draft statement proposed by General Musharaff.” Instead of marching on the path of love and concord, the degree of hatred and conflict is on increasing rate. During last five years only, there have been eleven terrorist attacks with the support or connivance of Interservice Intelligence (ISI) of Pakistan as given below: 1st October 2001 on Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly; 13th December 2001 on Indian Parliament; 24th September 2002 on Akshardham Temple in Gujrat; 14th May 2002 on winter capital of Jammu; 13th March 2003 in local train of Mumbai; 25th August 2003 car bombs in Mumbai; 15th August 2004 in Assam; 29th October 2005 Shopping centers in Delhi; 7th March 2006

491

in Varanasi; 11th July 2006 in local trains of Mumbai; and on 8th September 2006 in Malegaon. In all these attacks, over 600 persons died and several hundreds injured. Besides properties worth crores of rupees have been destroyed. In his interview to Shekhar Gupta for ‘Walk-theTalk program, published in Indian Express on 18th September 2006, Ghulam Nabi Azad, the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir said: “There are three agencies in Pakistan, who support and sponsor militants. One is the Pakistan-based militant agents or militant leaders, they support and finance the militants here; there are two other agencies. There is ISI; there is the army that abets and arms and supports militants to infiltrate. During the past three years, the army sponsored, the ISI sponsored militants from across were kept on hold. But unfortunately, for the last three months they have been coming. They have been let loose. So I do not think this could be possible without the knowledge of Musharaff Saab.” Under the pretext of helping the earthquake victims, Pakistan Government handed over relief work and the funds that poured into to Laskar-e-Toiba to enable it to entrench itself there. It still harbors Dawoods and Salahuddins, provides them Pakistani passport, identity cards and facilitates their anti-Indian activities. A decade and a half since the demise of Punjab militancy, the ISI still harbors more than a dozen top commanders of various Sikh outfits. India’s National Security Adviser, M.K. Narayanan revealed that Pakistan supported the Taliban in kidnapping and killing of Maniappan, an Indian worker in

492

Afghanistan. In a post-Mumbai bomb blast interview he warned that Pakistan-linked terrorists could strike our nuclear facilities, scientific establishments and defence forces. The ISI has substantially upgraded its presence in Bangladesh and is increasingly leveraging fundamentalist groups for anti-India action. The C.B.I. believes that fake Indian currency notes are being supplied by Pakistan Government Press at Quetta to Dubai-based counterfeiters who smuggle it into India. It pegs the volume of such notes at Rs 1,69000 crores. Prime Minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh during his visit to Mumbai on 14th July 2006 after Mumbai train bomb blasts said: “…We are also certain that terrorist modules are instigated, inspired and supported by elements across the border. It is obvious that unless Pakistan takes concrete steps to implement assurances it has given to prevent terrorism from any territory within its control, public opinion in India, which has supported the peace process will be undermined.” On 59th Independence Day of India Dr. Manmohan Singh acknowledging that Pakistan had put some checks on the activities of terrorists from its soil, he averred there were half-hearted efforts. It is necessary that the entire infrastructure of terrorism is totally dismantled.” On 29th August 2006, Dr. Singh said: “This peace process cannot go forward if Pakistan does not deal with terrorism firmly.” He asked what has Pakistan done to control terrorism? On his way to Havana, Dr. Singh said: “I would not like to use strong words, our worry has been that the Pakistan Government has not done enough to control these elements.”

493

On 18th September 2006, Dr Manmohan Singh retained his language. “Well, it is quite obvious to Pakistan that things cannot be business as usual if terrorism is not under control or if the Government of Pakistan is seen not to be willing to work with us to control terrorism. Before a meeting with Musharaff in New York in 2005, Dr. Singh told Bush: “Our belief is that Pakistan still controls the flow of terror and they must stop it for any realistic progress.” Dr. Singh’s voice seems to have been taken as rattling clouds, which is evident from the rise in Pakistan sponsored terrorist attacks. After nearly three months of investigations, the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has come to the conclusion that Pakistan Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) spent nearly Rs 20 lakhs on the serial blasts in Mumbai’s local trains on 11th July 2006. Part of the Rs. 20 lakhs was spent in bringing the eleven Pakistani bombers to Mumbai in three batches and through three different routes- Nepal, Bangladesh and Gujrat. A sizable amount of the money was routed through Faizal. In August, the ATS seized 37000 riyals (Rs. 4.81 lakhs) from Faizal’s cousin’s flat at Nagpada in central Mumbai. ATS Chief K.P.Suryavanshi said : “We have evidence that this money was routed from Pakistan to Saudi Arabia and then to India to be used for antinational activities.” Investigators also said that Faizal who sent recruits to Pakistan for training and indoctrination, would receive around 10-12 lakhs a year

494

Mumbai’s blasts.

Police

Commissioner

A.N.Roy

emphatically said that ISI was behind Mumbai train bomb In spite of this conclusive results of investigations, General Pervez Musharaff told his Prime Minister Shaukat Ali, as reported in Times of India: “Pakistan is fighting a war against terrorism on principles. India’s blaming Pakistan for Mumbai bomb blasts is regrettable.” Earlier Pakistan’s spokesperson Tasmin Aslam said : “Mumbai Police was blaming the ISI to deflect attention from the perpetrators of the terror attacks in Malegaon.” Tasmin Aslam repeated Musharaff’s offer to help India with investigations, but categorically ruled out the possibility of turning over the suspects. This is the attitude and posture of Pakistan even after the Havana Statement of Singh and Musharaff. Havana Statement: The Joint Statement issued by Dr. Manmohan Singh and General Pervez Musharaff at Havana on 16th September 2006 says: “The leaders decided to continue the joint search for mutually acceptable options for a peacefully negotiated settlement of all issues between India and Pakistan including Jammu and Kashmir in a sincere and purposeful manner. On the Jammu and Kashmir issue, there have been useful discussions. There is need to build convergences and narrow down divergences.” Dr. Manmohan Singh said: “The two leaders met in the after-math of Mumbai bomb blasts. They strongly condemned all acts of terrorism and agreed that terrorism is a scourage that needs to be effectively dealt with. They decided to put in place an India-Pakistan anti-terrorism

495

Institutional

mechanism

to

identify

and

implement

counter terrorism initiatives and investigations. “We have now agreed on a new mechanism to deal with terrorism. The mechanism, which was yet to be worked out and put in place, must be credible, inspire confidence in both the countries and, therefore, we will have to look at the mechanics of the move with due care. “Musharraf has assured me that Pakistan has no hand in perpetrating terrorism. He did not go in the past, let us work together in the future and I believe this is the best we could get in the circumstances…There is an explicit commitment on the part of Pakistan to say that they will go with us to do all that in their control to control the scourage. “Musharaff had very frank and sincere discussions on all issues and both agreed to find a via media to reconcile positions and India’s borders cannot be redrawn and Pakistan’s stance that it cannot accept the Line of Control as a permanent solution… We have committed ourselves to work sincerely to find credible solution to all outstanding issues and that includes Jammu and Kashmir…Resolving Siachen and Sir Creck issues were part of the commitment between the two countries.” Immediately after the Havana Statement, Musharaff told the General Assembly of the United Nations on 18th September 2006: “An acceptable solution of the long standing dispute of Jammu and Kahmir was within reach. Positive meeting with Dr. Manmohan Singh will help carry forward the peace process and resolve issues, including Kashmir. Pakistan desires a peaceful environment in the region. We have been engaged in a peace process with India aimed at confidence building

496

and resolving issues including Jammu and Kashmir dispute, which has been the source of tension and conflict between two countries in the past. “Improved relations and the conducive international environment has brought an acceptable solution of this long standing dispute with in reach. “On Siachen India has informally agreed to consider Pakistan’s proposal to take Army representatives on both sides to the table to talk about the pull-out.” The sum and substance of the Havana Statement is that the Pakistani Military Intelligence (ISI) which till now was perceived in India as the core of the terrorism directed against it-Mumbai blasts being the most recent instance-will now align itself in the equivalent of the Indian Campaign Against Terrorism (ICAT). However, India would have to keep the expectations modest and proceed with caution. Musharaff is proving to be a master tactician. Pakistan’s GHQ’S dramatic U-turn over the Taliban in the immediate after-math of 9/11, 2001 must be kept in mind. It is pertinent to recall what Musharaff had said in an interview to an Indian Fortnightly in August 2006. He said: “Over the years, our intelligence agencies have been operating against each other…Let me talk frankly-This is the reality which we have seen over last 50 years. My experience is that there is a lack of trust. We should have trust in each other.” Speaking to European leaders in Brussels a few days earlier, Musharaff rejected all allegations that his country was connected to terrorism. If there was any terrorism out of Pakistan, he claimed, it could be free-

497

lance terrorists who might be operating on their own and he could not do anything about that.” Musharaff who during the SAARC Summit in Nepal in January 2002 said that the Kashmir issue was linked to Indian terrorism and cannot be separated, is now going to be our Comrade-in Arms in our war against terrorism betrays both a lack of history and strategic vision. Pakistani commentator Ahmed Rashid told German newspaper ‘Der Spiegel’: “Pakistan remains the Global center for terrorism. The fact is that, after 9/11, despite the May crack down by Musharaff regime, we have not shot down militant groups. The reason is that these groups are very closely tied with the military’s foreign policy, especially with respect to Kashmir and Afghanistan. This holds good today-every indication points in that direction. Given this attitude, we need to ask what kind of results the proposed joint mechanism on terrorism can hope to achieve. Pakistan has more than a quarter of a century experience in taking the Americans for a ride on nuclear proliferation and Jihadi terrorism. Even now after rearming the Taliban to fight against U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, Musharaff disclaims all responsibility for the development. When he is able to play such games successfully with the U.S., which has far more clout over Pakistan than any other power, it would be futile to expect any worthwhile results from the Havana Statement. Commanders from five NATO countries-the US. Britain, Denmark, Canada and Holland- whose troops have fought the bloodiest battle with the Taliban in five years, are demanding their Governments to get tough with

498

Pakistan over the support and sanctuary its security services provide to the Taliban. This is according to Ahmed Rashid, a prominent Pakistani analyst and author of an acclaimed book on Taliban. In a dispatch from Afghanistan to Washington, Rashid writes: “NATO’s report on operation Medusa, an intense battle that lasted from 4th September to 17th September 2006 demonstrates the extent of the Taliban’s military capability and states clearly that Pakistan’s Interservices Intelligence (ISI) is involved in supplying it.” NATO Commanders, he says are frustrated that even after Pakistan’s military dictator Pervez Musharaff met Bush and Blair last week, Western leaders are declining to call Musharaff’s bluff. NATO is said to have captured 160 Taliban, many of them Pakistani’s who described in detail the ISI’s support to the Taliban, just the ways jihadis captured in India frequently detail ISI training aimed token denials from Islamabad. More than 1000 Taliban, and not around 500 as reported, were killed in the battle as Pakistan fed them into Afghanistan like cannon fodder. According to NATO reports, during the September offensive, Taliban fired an estimated 4,00,000 rounds of ammunition, 2000 rocket-propelled grenades and 1000 mortar shells, which slowly arrived in Panjwani from Quetta in Pakistan over the spring months. Ammunition dumped unearthed after the battle showed that the Taliban had stocked over one million rounds in Panjwani. Nato estimated the cost of Taliban ammunition stocks at around $2.6 million.

499

A senior NATO officer was quoted as saying: “The Taliban could not have done this on their own without the ISI support.” NATO and Afghan officers say that two training camps for the Taliban are located just outside Quetta, while the group is using hundreds of madrassas where the fighters are housed and fired up ideologically before being sent to the front where they are waved on by Pakistani None border of guards in be contravention of any of the to guarantees given by Musharaff. this should surprise Washington, where analysts have long said Pakistan is playing a two-faced game of using terror as a policy option to extract concessions from the west while professing peace, as it does with India. Under the circumstances, the best way for India would be to remain firm on the demand that unless terrorism stops, there can be no progress on Kashmir. Otherwise, we would once again be dealing naively with a country which feels it has outsmarted the entire world. One who has read Musharaff’s memoirs. “In the Line of Fire,” which has been dumped as ‘Pack of lies’ by Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif; ‘Bundle of lies’ by India’s former Military Chief, V.P.Malik; and ‘Tissue of lies’ by India’s former National Security Adviser Brijesh Mishra cannot by stretch of imagination trust General Pervez Musharaff. What is Solution: While speaking on the resolution adopted by the Muslim League at Lahore in 1940 Jinnah had said: “… Islam and Hinduism are not religions, but are different and distinct social orders and it is a dream that Hindus

500

and Muslims can evolve ever a common nationality. The misconception of one Indian nation is the cause of our troubles and will lead India to destruction if we fail to revise our notions in time. The Hindus and Muslims belong to two different religious philosophies, social customs and literature. They belong to two different civilizations based mainly on conflicting ideas and conceptions. Their aspects on life and of life are different. To yoke together two such nations under a single state must lead to growing discontent and the final destruction of any fabric that may be so built up for the Government of such a state.” Jinnah further said: “The history of the 1200 years has failed to achieve unity and has witnessed, during these years India always divided into Hindu India and Muslim India. The withdrawal of the British Raj will be the herald of the entire break up with worst disaster than has ever taken place during the last 1000 years.” Concluding his speech, Jinnah said: “We wish to live in peace and harmony with our neighbors as free and independent people.” Has Pakistan right from its creation acted as advised by Jinnah and lived with India as a friendly State with goodwill? The reply without fear of contradiction would be in negative. Then what is the solution? The solution is to show courage to help in disintegrating Pakistan. This extraordinary courage was shown by Mrs Indira Gandhi by backing Sheikh Mujibur Rehman, the result of which was creation of Bangladesh. The break-up of Pakistan was probably inherent in a state divided by geography and strong regional differences, with religion and military forces as its only

501

unifying agents. But for Mrs Indira Gandhi, it was an opportunity to assert India’s dominance in the subcontinent and cut Pakistan to size. And she did it. Mrs Indira Gandhi received an uproarious ovation, when she announced its end in the Indian Parliament. “The West Pakistan forces have unconditionally surrendered.” She declared above the cheers, “Dacca is now the free capital of a free country.” Not only had she given India its first military victory, but she had cocked a snook at the gun-boat diplomacy of the world’s superpower. Although President Nixon stopped short of direct military intervention on Pakistan’s side, he did send the American Seventh Fleet into the Bay of Bengal. The Navel presence was meant to frighten India and to signal to China that, “Look, we are quite ready to take firm action.” But Indira Gandhi was totally firm, and she did not get deflected on account of the movement of the Seventh Fleet. A combination of personal courage and shrewed political timing won Mrs. Indira Gandhi the title: “The only man in the cabinet.” The western Journalists often called her the “Empress of India.” Dr. Manmohan Singh, the present Prime Minister of India carries the legacy of Mrs Indira Gandhi. He knows that the Sikhs were major victims of the partition. And their tragedy explains why Sikhs fought ferociously the three wars between India and Pakistan. Dr. Manmohan Singh has God sent opportunity. Just as in the past, the days of General Ayub Khan and Zia-ul-Haq were numbered, so are those of General Musharaff. What seems likely is that Musharaff may be thrown out of power. Even if he makes peace with India

502

on Indian terms, it seems unlikely that he will last. It happened to Yahya Khan after the fall of East Pakistan. The calculated killing of Baluchi leader Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti may prove dooms day for Musharaff. Baluchistan may well go the East Pakistan way and become independent. Bugti might have been killed, but Baluch desire to be independent has been freshly awakened. According to the ‘Baluchistan Express,’ the protests that broke out after Bugti’s murder are similar in character and intensity to the mass protest after General Yahya Khan decided to call off elections that would have brought East Pakistan’s Awami League to power. As the Baluchistan Express asserted, the current Baluchi protests are of the same level that were seen in Bangladesh on 1st March 1971. What happened in East Pakistan can well happen in Baluchistan as well. On 3rd September 2006, according to reports, the Baluchistan National Party’s Akhtar Mengal faction has announced that it would resign its seats both in the provincial and national assemblies as well as Pakistan’s Senate. According to ‘The Hindu,’ political mobilazation in Baluchistan seems to be on its way, with even Pakistani commentator suggesting that Nawab Bugti’s death could become a catalyst for thousands of recruits to join the ranks of Baluchistan’s secession militia. Apparently Baluch groups have already demonstrated both the capabilities and material resources to engage Pakistan’s armed forces in a bitter war of attrition. Baluchistan may well turn out to be second Bangladesh, with Musharaff having also to face internal rebellion within his own military establishment. For

503

example on 18th July 2006, eighteen prominent figures in Pakistan’s public life including the former Inter-services Intelligence (ISI) chiefs, Lt. Gen. Asad Durrani and Lt. Gen. Hameed Gul, not to speak of former Baluchistan Governor Lt. Gen. Abdul Badir wrote to Musharaff demanding that he either resign as President of Pakistan or Chief of Army Staff. Their objection is to the politicization of the Army. In their jointly signed letter to Musharaff, they plainly asserted that the elections scheduled for 2007 will not be credible without neutral and impartial caretaker Governments both at the center and the provinces. Selig S. Harrison, a senior scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for scholars is “debating whether Musharaff has become too dependent on Islamic extremist parties in Pakistan to further US interests and whether he should be pressurized to permit the return of two exiled former Prime Ministers, Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif.” According to Harrison, “There is mounting evidence that as an ally, Musharaff has been an opportunist from the start who has continued to help the Taliban and who has gone after al-Queda cells in Pakistan only to the extent necessary to fend off US and British pressure.” Harrison, in his well publicized article, added: “The US should use its aid leverage to promote three goals: Bhutto and Sharif should be permitted to return and organize freely. If Musharaff wants to run for president again, he should step down as Army Chief of Staff and run as a civilian. Finally, he should turn over power to a neutral caretaker Government that would conduct the elections.”

504

In other words, what Harrison is prophesying is that Musharaff may well be on his way out, having lost US moral support. Harrison noted three aspects of Musharaff’s rule: One, Taliban forces continue to have unrestricted access to Pakistani border towns as staging areas and sanctuaries. Two, even if Musharaff wanted to remove Taliban and al-Queda forces from Pakistan, his ability to do so is limited by the political pact he made with a five party Islamic alliance in 2004 and Three: Islamic parties are flourishing under the protective umbrella of the Pakistani Armed forces. Pakistan, meanwhile, has been charging India with inciting the Buluchis to rebellion. According to M.V.Kamath, “India does not have to. Musharaff is embarked on a selfdestructive mode that Delhi can look at from afar comfortably.” The New York Times recently wrote: “There is an increasing view in the US that Pakistan is not very useful and that there are people who are really thinking twice about US relationship with Pakistan.” That is significant remark. If Baluchistan falls as well it might Bugti or no Bugti then it would not be too long before the North West Frontier Province where Islamabad is already fighting another war goes its way, leaving behind a deeply depleted Pakistan. If Baluchistan is successful, which is quite likely in becoming an independent country, the Sind will follow its suit. Then what remains in Pakistan. It would be in the real sense a truncketed and moth-eaten Pakistan, which Jinnah until last resisted. But he had to yield to the master mind of Lord Mountbatten. Musharaff is certainly in grave and great trouble. Events are turning in India’s favour.

505

His book, “In the Line of Fire,” has exposed General Pervez Musharaff as a rank lier. It would not be exaggeration to say that he has surpassed Gobbels. George Bush, seems to have lost confidence in Musharasff, as evident from what he said: “With us or against us.” Lately he has warned Musharaff to stop terrorist attacks in India lest prepare for consequences. The Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns has very recently asked Pakistan to completely stop terrorism against India.

****

506

CAN HINDUS AND MUSLIMS LIVE IN HARMONY IN INDIA

Muslims form over 11% of India’s population, but nowhere, apart from Jammu and Kshmir and the insignificant Island of Lakshdweep are they in majority. In Kashmir 6 districts contain most of the State’s 66% Muslims. Murshidabad in West Bengal and Malappuram in Kerala have Muslim majorities. In 234 districts of India, Muslims are less than 10% of the population. In only 30 districts they are more than 20%. Nearly half the Muslim population lives in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Bengal. And yet the political parties in India, be it of any shed cares more to please the Muslims than Hindus. Before independence, I.H. Mohajir had audacity to say: “The Muslims of Bengal would not allow an inch of land to be taken out of Pakistan-Bengal. If 17 Muslims could conquer his province, several crores of them could certainly retain it. And Maulana Akbar Sha Khan had courage to throw challenge to Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya to bring 2200 Hindus to fight with 700 Muslims to prove as to who won the battle of Panipat. Why is it so? Because, the Hinduism divide people and in contrast, Islam unites Muslims as it is a close corporation. The brotherhood of Islam is not universal brotherhood of man. It is brotherhood of Islam for Islam. That is why Mohmad Ali held an adulterous and a fallen Musalman to be better than Mahatma Gandhi. And no Hindu leader of the day raised voice against it.

507

Mr. N.K. Seshan, who was Private Secretary of Jawaharlal Nehru said: “ Nehru’s sympathy for Indian Muslims often irritated some of his collegues, who used to refer to him as ‘Maulana Nehru.’ He felt Hindus were safe anyhow in India, but he felt minorities should be protected, even if the majority had to sacrifice something.” Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, as back as 1970 said: “We do feel that Hindus should not be discriminated against in this country, simply because they are in the majority. If the minorities are pampered, if there is no common Civil Code of Law just because orthodox Muslims are opposed to it, then it creates an impression in the Hindu mind that things are not moving in the right direction. Just because political parties are more interested in getting votes from the minorities than in building a really non-communal structure.” This feeling ventilated by Vajpayee, in fact, brought Bharatiya Janta Party in power with Vajpayee as Prime Minister. But he failed to bring common Civil Code in operation. Instead, to retain power, he and his Bharatiya Janta Party took shelter of the policy of appeasement to secure Muslim votes. Unfortunately, every political party, be that of any shade, has adopted and followed the policy of appeasement to please Muslims. Probably because of this, the Hindus have started to retaliate in a very strong manner and that should be a matter of concern to all political parties to tell Muslims-thus far and no further. A question was put to Mr. Rehmat Ali, the protagonist of Pakistan: “How will it affect the position of the forty five million Muslims in Hindustan?” Rehmat Ali’s answer was:

508

“The only effective guarantee we can offer is that of reciprocity, and therefore, we solemnly undertake to give all those safe-guards to non-Muslim minorities in Pakistan, which will be conceded to our Muslim minority in Hindustan. “But what sustains us most is the fact that they know we are proclaiming Pakistan, in the highest interest of the “Millet.” It is as much theirs as it is ours. While for us it is a national citadel, for them it will ever be a moral anchor. So long as the anchor holds, everything is or can be made safe. But once it gives way, all will be lost.” The answer given by the Muslims of India was equally clear. They said: “We are not weakened by the separation of Muslims into Pakistan and Hindustan. We are better protected by the existence of separate Islamic States on the eastern and western borders of Hindustan than we are by their submersion in Hindustan.” Dr. B.R. Ambedkar said: “By the creation of Pakistan, Hindustan is not freed of the communal question. While Pakistan has become a homogenous State by redrawing its boundaries, Hindustan remained a composite State. The Musalmans are scattered all over Hindustan-though they are mostly congregated in towns-and no inguinity in the matter of redrawing boundaries can make it homogenous. The only way to make Hindustan homogenous is to arrange for exchange of population. Until this is done, it must be admitted that even with the creation of Pakistan, the problem of majority vs minority will remain in Hindustan as before and will continue to produce disharmony in the body politic of Hindustan.”
(Dr. B.R. Ambedkar: Writings & Speeches, Vol. 8, pg 116-17)

509

Dr. Ambedkar has proved prophetic and will continue to be so until the solution given by him is implemented. Mr. V.D. Savarkar, the President of Hindu Mahasabha had said: “The Muslim minority in India will have the right to be treated as equal citizens, enjoying equal protection and civic rights in proportion to their population. The Hindu majority will not encroach on the legitimate rights of any non-Hindu majority. But in no case can the Hindu majority resign its rights, which as a majority it is entitled to exercise the under Hindus any by democratic remaining in and legitimate and constitution. The Muslim minority in particular has not obliged minority therefore, they must remain satisfied with the status they occupy and with the legitimate share of civic and political rights that is their proportionate due. It would be simply preposterous to endow the Muslim minority with the right of exercising a practical veto on the legitimate rights and privileges of the majority. The Hindus do not want a change of masters. They are not going to struggle and fight and die only to replace an Edward by an Aurangzeb simply because the latter happenes to be born within Indian borders, but they want henceforth to be masters themselves in their own house, in their own land.” Savarkar further said: “India cannot be assumed today to be a Unitarian and homogenous nation, but on the contrary, these are two nations in the main, the Hindus and Muslims in India.” Savarkar and Jinnah agreed and insisted that there are two nations in India-one the Muslim nation and the other the Hindu nation. They differed only as regards

510

the terms and conditions on which the two nations should live. Jinnah said India should be divided into twoPakistan and Hindustan- the Muslim nation to occupy Pakistan and the Hindu nation to occupy Hindustan. Savarkar insisted that although there are two nations in India, India shall not be divided into two parts, one for Muslims and the other for Hindus; that the two nations shall dwell in one country and shall live under the mantle of one single constitution; that the constitution will be such that the Hindu nation will be enabled to occupy a predominant position that is due to it and the Muslim nation made to live in the position of subordinate cooperation with the Hindu nation. Savarkar’s scheme tells the Muslims- thus far and no further.
(Dr. B. R. Ambedkar: Writings & Speeches, Vol. Pg 139 –142)

No policy of appeasement by the Government will make the Muslims say from the bottom of their heart, “I am Indian first and Indian last” so long as their loyalty is to the Muslim Canon Law and their belief is in the brotherhood of Islam for Islam. And therefore one day or the other the suggestion made by Dr. Ambedkar or Savarkar will have to be implemented to solve the question of Hindu-Muslim relations once for all. History demands a united India and it is bound to get it. It has always been Bharat, spreading from the Himalayas to Kanyakumari. As the saying goes India is asetu Himachala Paryanta. Sooner the better.

****

511

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful